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So as you know, I stopped writing lengthy reviews on this site this year, keeping the blog as more of a film diary of sorts.  Lo and behold,...

Friday, August 28, 2015

Movie Review - Last Days in Vietnam

Last Days in Vietnam (2014)
Directed by Rory Kennedy

The Paris Peace Accord signed in January 1973 officially brought an end to the Vietnam War.  South Vietnam and communist North Vietnam agreed to peace, but two years later in March 1975, the North launched a massive attack into the South, with the imminent arrival of the Communists to the capitol city of Saigon by mid-April.  Rory Kennedy's documentary flick Last Days in Vietnam tells the tale of what occurred at the end of April in 1975, detailing how the US planned on truly making an exit from the war-torn Vietnam through first-hand accounts from government officials, US soldiers, and Vietnamese refugees.

Decidedly un-political, Last Days in Vietnam is an interesting look at the US's final involvement in the Vietnam War, placing most of its focus on Ambassador Graham Martin who did not want to evacuate the country for fear of sending the message to both the American and Vietnamese people that the war was lost.  While some may deem Martin's actions disappointing and ultimately harmful, the documentary never makes him the easy "villain," instead showing that Martin had his reasons for not wanting to admit defeat.

Admittedly, I'm not incredibly familiar with all of the intricacies of Vietnam, so it's possible this story has been told before, but it was new to me.  The tales become a tad repetitive, but overall, Last Days in Vietnam plays like a feature film with a lead-up to a tense conclusion that ends things on an exciting and emotional note.

The RyMickey Rating:  B

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