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We Were Soldiers [Blu-ray]

Mel Gibson , Madeleine Stowe , Marc Blucas    Suitable for 15 years and over   Blu-ray
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (144 customer reviews)
Price: 9.49 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

We Were Soldiers [Blu-ray] + Black Hawk Down [Blu-ray] [2007] [Region Free] + Saving Private Ryan [Blu-ray] [1998] [Region Free]
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Product details

  • Actors: Mel Gibson, Madeleine Stowe, Greg Kinnear, Sam Elliott, Chris Klein
  • Directors: Marc Blucas
  • Producers: Nick Glennie-Smith, Stephen McEveety, Bruce Davey
  • Format: DVD-Video
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Icon Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 24 Dec 2008
  • Run Time: 133 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (144 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 24,829 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



We Were Soldiers, based on the bestselling account of the battle of La Drang valley at the outset of the Vietnam War, is the latest Mel Gibson Braveheart-esque offering where plot and characterisation, rather than the men who lost their lives in the conflict, are the most serious casualties. The story follows Lt. Colonel Hal Moore (Gibson) and his platoon through a brief spell at boot camp and then into the battle itself.

In place of the moral ambiguity offered by, say, Platoon or Hamburger Hill, We Were Soldiers presents us with archetypes. Gibson's family man colonel is almost a parody of Patton, a man with so much heart you wonder how he manages to get up in the morning. He's a good Catholic, loves his men, and tells us that he's the first one on the battlefield and the last one off. And if that self-eulogising wasn't enough we have the slow-mo, heavily scored last-one-into-the-helicopter moment to prove it. In uncomfortably jingoistic contrast, the commander of the Viet Cong never leaves his cavernous headquarters as he sends his faceless foot soldiers to their death.

What saves the film are Ryan Hurst's performance as the stoic Sergeant Ernie Savage and Barry Pepper's non-combatant journalist who gets caught up in the action and has to fight to survive, both of whom inject some much-needed humanity into the action. Otherwise there is so little character development before the offensive that you find yourself squinting at the screen trying to work out who just bought the bullet when you really should be feeling every gunshot. Braveheart scribe Randall Wallace's direction is heavy handed and over sentimental--relentless violence masquerades as poignant remembrances of the futility of war--and the only time it ever approaches genuine emotion is the scene where the wives begin receiving telegrams detailing their husband's deaths. When measured against Hamburger Hill and Full Metal Jacket, We Were Soldiers doesn't even deserve to be in the same platoon. --Kristen Bowditch

Product Description

Mel Gibson We Were Soldiers

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great film, with a lot of reality 20 Oct 2009
By John
I watched this film from the perspective of someone who has served in the Armed Forces, in a war zone. I found it to be completely real. Mel Gibson instantly reminded me of the few commanders I have served under, for whom we would have gone to the gates of hell and beyond. The relationship between him and his staff, both commissioned and non-commissioned was entirely believable.

Given that one of the advisors was the reporter we see in the film, its not surprising that the portrayal of this battle as frightening, disjointed at times and completely alien in many ways comes over so well.

I don't 'love' this film, I respect it. It reminds me of both the nobility and horror of war both of which retain their own authenticity in this portrayal. In that sense, it is a great film.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie, Poor Blu Ray Quality 18 Aug 2009
This is one of my favourite war movies and was thrilled that it was on Blu Ray, but unfortunetly the picture is not of HD/Blu Ray quality.

It didn't diminish my enjoyment of the film, as it was like a slightly better DVD, but in comparison to others Blu Ray conversions, this rates bottom of the pile in the few that I have seen.

5 for the movie/ 1 for the Blu Ray, total score = 3.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Ive seen many of the other Vietnam war films and in my judgement this ranks as one of the best. While other films dwell on the futility of war, cynicism about why they are there, an indifferent high command to the plight of the men, along with the brutalising effect (all very true) which war has on the soldiers themselves, this film tends to dwell more on the professionalism and strong comradeship of the soldiers as a unit without being overtly gung ho. The soldiers realise that they are in a situation where they are caught between the hammer and the anvil, and that they can do little about it, but get on with the job at hand and knowing that they can rely on one another to with their lives as their training has taught them.
What gives this film such strength is that the basis of the story is true - with around 400 american soldiers outnumbered ten to one by the North Vietnamese army in the ensuing battle which is to follow. You feel the rising tension of the situation as the soldiers move into the military zone, coupled with the helplessness of the soldiers wives, some of them with babies who are left behind to wait, and the clumsy even callous way in which the army delivers telegrams of those killed using taxi-drivers.
While I am very wary of the Hollywood war/propaganda machine punching out films depicting the american soldier as good true and invincible, all of which is a huge turn off to me. Its worth remembering that most soldiers (reflective of the communites they come from) are ordinary decent people with wives and families who try to live good lives according to their understanding, and that good is expressed through the comradeship and loyalty to one another and to their unit.
I dont doubt for a second there is a lot of poetic license in this film and "hollywoodisation" of much of what happened, so remember when watching, that the basis of Hollywood is first to entertain and later to educate
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars We Were Soldiers - UK Blu-ray - avoid 16 Dec 2009
Although the UK version has improved video & audio compared to the USA release, it has several problems:

1. Major problem with the Opening Credits having been completey omitted! The montage of scenes is still there but the film title, cast & crew credits are not overlayed as per the original DVD.

2. Scene captions are also missing - these normally appear as overlays to identify the location, date and time that an event or battle is taking place (I'm not talking about the captions that appear when you fire up the scene selection menu, but the overlayed text that should display as the film progresses). This is also evident in the opening scene when the first line of the narrator's comments appear as typewritten font across the screen, then disappear as if blown away like sand.

3. Special feature documentary plays inside a window approx one-quarter the size of the available screen, rather than filling the entire screen as per the DVD release.

4. Missing the 10 deleted scenes and collection of trailers & TV spots from the DVD (and US Blu-ray).
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We Were Soldiers - Gibson does Moore proud. 17 Mar 2003
I have read the book, 'We Were Soldiers Once.... And Young' and it had me in tears. I watched the movie for my Media Studies Coursework and I was in more tears than when I read the book.
Admittedly, it is obvious it is an American movie, obvious in the sense you hate the Vietnamese people after ten minutes of watching it, but the emotions felt as you watch the families and the soldiers suffer during and even after the war is over really touches the heart.
I personally loved the film. I'm thinking about doing it as a coursework piece at university, and I'll study the book as a comparison piece.
CLever camera angles and lighting techniques make the viewer feel like part of the action, and the shots of the families receiving telegrams pulls even the toughest of heart strings.
Five out of five, no doubt about it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cracking Vietnam War film 7 July 2014
This was another one of those "hmm shall I bother" purchases as I browsed the DVD selection of a local shop. Personally I have no time at all for non realistic and yellow ribbon patriotic films for any period (Platoon changed that for many people), I like to see things from both sides and some good action scenes. The film portrays the Battle of Ia Drang in 1965 which is the first major conflict in Vietnam.

Fortunately We Were Soldiers avoids too much ribbon stuff (there is a bit but not overly so) Instead we get a surprisingly effective film with some excellent performances from Gibson (as Colonel Hal Moore) The film delivers some effective battle scenes which are convincing and portray the intensity of the battle, but there are also "at home" sections with the wives of the servicemen and some strong supporting roles esp Madeleine Stowe as Julia Moore, don't be put off by this they do add to the film and bring another side to the tale.

The battle itself is a good one and though there are some differences between real events (and the book) esp the ending battle, it evidently does capture the conflict well, and Hal Moore himself praised the film for "getting it right". Strong action sequences and good camera work, we also have some good cast members esp notable is Sam Elliott who plays Sergeant Major Basil L. Plumley very well.

I also like the way the Randall Wallace (who Directs and Produces) shows both sides with balance and is able to connect viewers to the main characters (all of them including non combat ones), which is critical in any film production and yes even War films. We Were Soldiers is a polished production and should be high up the watch list of most, even non War film fans.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars The passion of the grunt, or: Mad Max: Beyond Rolling Thunder.
Having read the book, and being a veteran from a war zone myself, I found this film to be an appalling piece of propaganda.

Published 15 days ago by Olav
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great service and product
Published 1 month ago by Gerard Walker
4.0 out of 5 stars Sit back & watch
I have read other reviews that pan this film for being historically inaccurate but that aside it is what it is, another war is hell American chest thumping film. Read more
Published 2 months ago by A. D. Plumb
5.0 out of 5 stars This is an absolute must see for so may reasons
Based on the true story of the newly formed US 7th 'Air' Cavalry under Lt Col Hal Moore and the battle of Ia Drang ... lookout for SGT Major Basil Plumley .. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Gixersan
4.0 out of 5 stars early American involvement.
I enjoy war films on the basis of the fact that "There but for the grace of God go I". This film is unusual in that it deals with the early days of American involvement in... Read more
Published 2 months ago by JF Horton
5.0 out of 5 stars Dvd
This is a gift for my son. I would think he will find it very good. It arrived quite quickly & is in good condition.
Published 2 months ago by mrs t g gianolio jones - TGJ
5.0 out of 5 stars Present for my son
I watched this film years ago but my son being into war films asked to have this. He was not disappointed.
Published 2 months ago by L Gar
3.0 out of 5 stars Just a good action war film...
This film gave a good account of the action in Vietnam...
It was well worth purchasing, and a good film to add to any collection......
Published 4 months ago by Steve
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Present
Bought for a gift which arrived next day. Value for money. My son in law was thrilled with his present.
Published 6 months ago by John Miller
5.0 out of 5 stars Replacement
I bought this DVD because I was bought this a few years ago and lent it to a " friend " who never bothered to return it
I enjoy this film
The DVD was dispatched... Read more
Published 6 months ago by David Moyes
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