Dear America: Letters Home from Vietnam Essay

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DEAR AMERICA: LETTERS HOME FROM VIETNAM A Documentary direct by Bill Couturie DEAR AMERICA: LETTERS HOME FROM VIETNAM Dear America: Letters Home from Vietnam is a 1987 documentary, directed by Bill Couturié. The film uses real letters written by US soldiers and archive footage, the film creates a highly personal experience of the Vietnam War.* This video provides us with a glimpse into what it was like in the jungles of Vietnam. What the soldiers had to endure and what their state of mind was when writing home to their loved ones. I believe war wreaks havoc in a soldier’s life and each one handles their situation differently. It is reflected in their letters home. It changes them in a way that no other situation aside from war can change them. I liked the way the documentary was started, men swimming and surfing in an ocean. It feels like a typical day in California. The beaches of Vietnam are beautiful. It shows you the innocence of the soldiers starting out in war. The letters reflect that innocence. It was simple “hi mom and dad! I’m fine, things are great. I miss you” I get the impression that some of them just didn’t know what to expect so it was more of a nervous excitement. Some were looking forward to their deployment because they believed in what they were fighting for and others didn’t know how to break the news to their parent that they were being deployed. I don’t know how I would feel being in a foreign country, far from home. The soldiers only had each other to depend on. Their lives depended on each other. From the documentary you could see the comradery that was being established within the units. The letters home at this point was the introduction of friends. Who the funniest guy was or who they looked up to as an older brother. I think these particular letters made both the soldiers and loved ones feel better

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