Uncommon Valor (1983) torrent download

Uncommon Valor

1983

Action / Drama / Thriller / War

6.4

Synopsis

A group of Vietnam War veterans re-unite to rescue one of their own left behind and taken prisoner by the Vietnamese. Led by his father (a retired Marine Colonel) and supported by a rich businessman whose son is also a P.O.W., the group engages in a dangerous and violent adventure trying to rescue the P.O.W.s, and at the same time, re-direct their lives.

Director

Ted Kotcheff

Cast

Gene Hackman
as Col. Cal Rhodes
Fred Ward
as Wilkes
Robert Stack
as MacGregor
Patrick Swayze
as Kevin Scott

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by SgtSlaughter N/A

Surprisingly Good

I went into this supposed trash 'Nam actioner with low expectations and had a pleasant surprise. It's actually one of the better Vietnam films out there, simply because it combines both and drama evenly without an over-reliance on either aspect.

Colonel Rhodes (Gene Hackman, A BRIDGE TOO FAR) recruits a band of Vietnam veterans to head back to Vietnam and rescue POWs. The team includes memory-plagued Wilkes (Fred Ward), young hotshot Blaster (Reb Brown, STRIKE COMMANDO), rough-'n-tumble Sailor (Randal "Tex" Cobb, THE DIRTY DOZEN: DEADLY MISSION), decent guy Johnson (Harold Sylvester), and aging Charts (Tim Thomerson, ZONE TROOPERS). Joining up at the last minute is new recruit Scott (Patrick Swayze, RED DAWN)

The film is pretty well-paced, dedicating the first 30 minutes to the recruitment of the men. Each on establishes their unique character as Hackman recruits them. Some jump on immediately; others don't want to return to Vietnam because of haunting memories, but do the decent thing in the end. There are some pretty efficient training scenes, and then it's off to Laos for the explosive finale.

The high point of the film is the climactic POW rescue, which involves a well-planned raid on a huge prisoner compound. Complete with lots of gunfire, explosions, shouting and one especially good bridge destruction shot, this tense scene will keep you on the edge of your seat. Instead of completely relying on guys getting shot for impact, though, there's also a few men who sacrifice themselves for their fellow soldiers - even though it's no longer their duty.

There's plenty of comedy, supplied by "Tex" Cobb as a slow-witted, incredibly strong oaf who participates in some good sight gags. I also liked the part in which the men get their weapons confiscated, so they must purchase a crate of dusty, WWII-era weapons to use.

The most powerful scene is when Hackman heads to recruit Fred Ward, who is at first unwilling to go back to Vietnam. His wife looks and acts the part of a troubled veteran's spouse perfectly as she tells of how she had to live through hell as her husband suffered nightmares and the like. Ward makes an impact throughout as he sleeps outside rather than in the barracks with the men. Why? It turns out he was trapped inside an NVA tunnel in the dark. He felt two bodies and knifed them. It turned out they were a mother and child. And even after he realized it, his men couldn't pull him out for hours because they were under fire. The way Reb Brown recounts the story made my jaw drop.

Hackman also delivers the good. I forgot to mention that he is so passionate about the mission because his son is one of the POWs. The grief is evident on his face as he runs throughout the burning camp finding other POWs - but not his son - as time runs out.

This film made me realize just how tough it was on families and comrades in arms to lose a son, father or husand in action.

Overall, a solid, well-directed, excellently acted and plenty entertaining helping of action and drama.

Reviewed by barnabyrudge N/A

Did this film provide the inspiration for Rambo: First Blood, Part II?

Gene Hackman is always a pleasure to watch, and he lifts this implausible POW-rescue escapade with a mature and convincing portrayal of a father strugglingto come to terms with the fact that his son was listed missing-in-action during the Vietnam War. The whole cast is quite impressive actually, consisting of old pros (Hackman and Robert Stack), future stars (Patrick Swayze, Fred Ward) and familiar bit players (Tim Thomerson, Harold Sylvester, Randall Tex Cobb, Reb Brown).

Hackman plays a retired army officer - a veteran of the Korean War - who desperately seeks closure on the matter of his son's disappearance in Vietnam. In the early '80s, he receives photographic evidence that American POWs are still being held in the south-east Asian country of Laos. In fact, one of the prisoners on the photo looks like his son. He assembles a team of ex-Vietnam vets, trains them for a return to combat, and heads off with them to Laos on a clandestine rescue mission.

This film seems to have been the starting point for Chuck Norris's 1984 offering Missing In Action, and Sylvester Stallone's 1985 hit Rambo, First Blood Part II. However, Uncommon Valor is much better than both of those overblown comic-strip follies. Although the action in this movie takes liberties with credibility, the character development is at least quite decent and the mental impact of fighting and losing friends in a war is explored. The cast give good performances (Swayze in particular, still a relative unknown here, gives the best performance of his career to this day). Ted Kotcheff directs well, conveying disparate moods - angst, humour, horror, excitement - very nicely in a variety of scenes.

Uncommon Valor is hard to swallow in terms of believability, but it is a well-made, well-acted and entertaining jungle rescue film.

Reviewed by SquirePM 9 /10

A Winner...It Caught Me By Surprise

This movie is not the "true Vietnam" experience. For that, see only 2 films: Apocalypse Now and Hamburger Hill. All the rest are baloney, or worse. (OK, it's now 2008 and I'm editing this to include We Were Soldiers as another great Vietnam movie. It captivated me utterly and took me back, as did Apocalypse Now. When it was over I was unable to move from my seat until after the cleaning crew had finished.)

Uncommon Valor, however, is still a great Vietnam movie for all to see. It's uneven as hell, so you have to be flexible. I suggest you have fun with the goofball stuff, appreciate the combat bonding stuff, gloss over the obligatory linkage stuff. Watch closely as each Vietnam veteran is recruited and introduced, and learn. Then enjoy what you will of the characters and the actors who bring them to life. (I mostly loved them.)

I was an Infantryman in Vietnam. This movie is the only Vietnam movie, the only one, that ever brought tears to my eyes. I was amazed at the power of its ending. It was overwhelming to me.

When it comes right down to it, take this movie seriously.

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