Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 84 Ratings

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  • Starring:
  • Summary: Based on the best-selling book which details the events of the battle of LZ X-Ray in the Ia Drang Valley. (Paramount)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 37
  2. Negative: 2 out of 37
  1. One of the best war movies of the past 20 years.
  2. A powerful experience, filled with dazzlingly executed action sequences that generally avoid the rock music and drugged-out conventions of "Apocalypse Now," and even exude a certain core of humanity.
  3. Gibson may get top billing, but it's Sam Elliott who steals all the scenes. As Sgt. Maj. Basil Plumley, a man who fires with his own .45 revolver rather than the standard M-16 rifles, he's full of hilariously colorful comments.
  4. Manages to evoke a complex series of reactions. It both frustrates with its unrelenting sentimentality and impresses with the overwhelming physicality of its combat sequences. These in turn are so powerful they take on a life of their own, sending a message that is probably quite opposite to the one the filmmakers intended.
  5. 63
    We Were Soldiers feels strangely irrelevant -- a well-acted, well-crafted and inconsequential visit to woefully familiar territory.
  6. Fitfully effective as a battle movie, and Mel Gibson does his rugged best to take center stage without seeming to. But the movie is self-righteous in a way that's frequently unseemly.
  7. Rarely have Gibson's tears seemed more fictional than in this supposedly authentic account of a historical event that's far too tragic to merit such superficial treatment.

See all 37 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 46
  2. Negative: 7 out of 46
  1. Apr 9, 2012
    The action never stops.
  2. May 16, 2013
    an amazing story that is my second favorite movie of all time everything was realistic and is the best army movie ever i have watched it like 20 times get it Expand
  3. Nov 16, 2013
    Exceptionally well made movie based on the novel written by the two people who actually lived the experience as a testimony in honor of the men of the 1/7 Cavalry who fought and died in battle. Expand
  4. johnh
    Oct 28, 2005
    Well done & affecting, without major flaws.
  5. Nov 28, 2012
    Randall Wallace's "We Were Soldiers" tells the story of the events that surrounded the first major battle of the Vietnam War. The film stars Mel Gibson, Barry Pepper, and Greg Kinnear. First off, the greatest aspect of this film is the really strong lead performances from Mel Gibson - He really shines in this role. Another impressive performance in the film is Sam Elliott's portrayal of Sergeant Major Basil L. Plumley. His character has some of the most memorable lines of dialogue in the film which are often crass and caustic. Another very memorable aspect of the film is it's intensely realistic use of special effects. The film uses special effects to simulate what the actual Battle Of Ia Drang was like. Some of the special effects are really engaging and compelling while other special effects are grotesque and grisly, but either way it helps to ground this film in realism. While a lot of the performances in the film were noteworthy, there were some that were. . .not. I'm not going to say which ones fell flat, but there were some moments when actors delivered their lines in a really unsuitable way. These moments don't really take away from the film's overall appeal, but. . .their just bad. All in all, I felt that "We Were Soldiers" was a fairly impressive film that crafted a very believable simulation of the first battle of the Vietnam War. Expand
  6. GrahamM.
    Jun 16, 2007
    Made very well, and is extremely intense. It is good that a war film be made as violent and as intense as this, cutting the BS. Because that is how to perhaps shock some out of apathy and show how truly evil, and senseless war is. A better film might have shown both sides a bit more evenly, to better humanize each side, for the true tragedy of war is that one is not fighting demons on the other side of the battle, but rather a soldier much like themselves. Expand
  7. Jun 18, 2014
    Randall Wallace's "We Were Soldiers" is an unpardonable insult to young Vietnamese soldiers who sacrificed themselves for the independence of their homeland, completely contradicting what the story was supposed to do - honor them. In terms of history, The Battle Of La Drang Valley ended with American troops' retreat after sustaining heavy casualties from the ambushing Viet Minh army, instead of a "spectacular counterattack which annihilated the entire Vietnamese battle forces" like what happend in the end of the movie. As regards to direction, performance and storytelling, this film is a rather dull, boring war drama compared to Black Hawk Down or Saving Private Ryan; accompanied by a predictable plot, mediocre battle scenes that can be matched only by Michael Bay's "Pearl Harbor", I have but one word to honor this movie: CRAP Expand

See all 46 User Reviews