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Bill Couturie

Dear America: Letters Home from Vietnam

Director Bill Couturie Composer Todd Boekelheide Cast Tom Berenger, Ellen Burstyn, J. Kenneth Campbell
84' - 1987 - War, Historical, Documentary - Dialogue: English
This film is a moving testimony to the simple prose, the complex poetry and savage polemics that were mailed by 19-year old hands in Vietnam. The letters are contradictory, some believing in the war, some not, some ambivalent, all scared shitless. These letters are read by a galaxy of Hollywood stars (who gave their voices free, as did the musicians) over a spectacular assembly of rare archive film that takes us through the war from Johnson to Nixon, from Kent State to Martin £Luther King. Seeing this movie after Platoon, Hamburger Hill and Full Metal Jacket, the documentary looks amazingly real, and vica versa. there's less blood but more pain. Like the Hollywood dramas this is q tribute to the men and women who went over there, but it also has the weakness, a refusal to confront the reasons why and a refusal to adopt any coherent attitude towards the North Vietnamese and the Vietcong. The wounds of Vietnam, are still open and running. (Adrian Turner)

Image gallery

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Bill Couturie


Todd Boekelheide


Tom Berenger, Ellen Burstyn, J. Kenneth Campbell


Bill Couturie, Richard Dewhurst

Director of Photography

Michael Chin


Stephen Stept


Thomas Bird

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Countries of production

United States of America