Hamburger Hill (DVD, 2008, 20th Anniversary Edition)

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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2008-05-20
  • Genre: War
  • Artist Name: Anthony Barrile, Michael Boatman, Don Cheadle, Kieu Chinh, Don James, Dylan McDermott, M.A. Nickles, Harry O'Reilly, Daniel O'Shea, Tim Quill, Tommy Swerdlow, Courtney B. Vance, Steven Weber, Tegan West, Doug Goodman, J.C. Palmore, J.D. VanSickle, Michael Dolan
  • Director: John Irvin
  • AMG Rating:
  • MPAA Rating: R
  • Category: Feature Films
  • Cautions: Not For Children, Adult Situations, Nudity, Graphic Violence, Adult Language, Profanity, War Violence
  • Year: 1987
  • Running Time: 104
  • Movie Country of Origin: USA
  • Available Language: English
  • Subtitles: Eng/Spa

    Though the anti-war sentiments of Hamburger Hill come through loud and clear, the film is squarely on the side of those courageous, much-maligned Americans who fought and died in Vietnam. Based on a true incident, the story takes place in 1969, as the 101st Airborne Division confronts the Vietcong in a bloody battle over Hill 937 (aka "Hamburger Hill") in the A Shau Valley. During the next ten days, both sides incur heavy losses, but the Cong refuse to surrender the hill. The ultimate American "victory" turns out to be a hollow one indeed. Scripted by Vietnam War vet Jim Carabatsos, Hamburger Hill not only underlines the futility of the war but also the pressures brought to bear upon the troops by an insensitive, often hostile media. By utilizing a cast of unknowns, director John Irvin deftly avoids the Hollywoodized slickness of such bigger-budgeted efforts as Apocalypse Now and The Deer Hunter. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
Movie Type
Movie Level Themes
    Great Battles
Movie Level Tones
    Visceral, Harsh, Ominous, Menacing, Grim

DVD Features

  • cc
  • Audio commentary with actors and writer/producer
  • Hamburger Hill: the appearance of reality
  • Medics in Vietnam
  • Interactive Vietnam War timeline
    AMG Rating


        John Irvin's visceral, grunt's-eye view of one of the most notoriously savage battles of the Vietnam War is a solid, beautifully directed film somewhat undercut by a perfunctory script. The film focuses on a dozen or so members of a rifle platoon assigned to take Hill 937 in the A Shau Valley in May of 1969. In Oliver Stone's Vietnam War film Platoon (1986), the unit's dissension reflected the reality of a divided nation. Hamburger Hill, however, raises an equally painful issue from this unique conflict: most U.S. front-line troops were simple, uneducated, and often apolitical kids, trying to come to grips with fighting a war on which public opinion was split. This is most poignantly illustrated by a scene in which one of the grunts (Tommy Swerdlow) is deeply hurt by a letter from his girlfriend telling him she can no longer write to him because she has been told that the war is immoral. While the film doesn't hide its hawkish sympathies, it's essentially about the muddy, bloody horror of this gruesome action, in which 70 percent of the platoon was either killed or wounded. Irvin emphasizes the grunt sense of Sisyphean futility, as they battle their way up and down the side of the hill over the course of 11 brutal days, and his stunning combat photography can stand comparison with any on film. It is less successful in its non-combat sequences, which feature too-familiar scenes reflecting the tensions and friendships among the soldiers. Their mantra, "Don't mean nothin'," also suggests what's missing from the film in terms of an ordering pattern of metaphor. But at its best, in the thick of combat, this is a stirring tribute to the men who fought and died on Hill 937. ~ Michael Costello, Rovi


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UPC: 028485232884
BINC: 9481773
Format: Restored/Remastered, Rated R, 110 minutes, Dolby Digital 5.1, Enhanced WS
Region: USA & territories, Canada
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Subtitle Languages: Spanish

Reviews (3)

  • Anonymous
    4 years, 1 month ago at Barnes & Noble

    5.0 / 5.0

    Probably the best Vietnam war movie out there. This movie was not bogged down with all the anti American, lets go to Vietnam to smoke weed crap you seen in other movies. Instead, the movie shows you how the peace lovin tree huggin hippies effected the troops in the field. It shows how racial hatred was overcame. It focuses on the common foot soldier. No political slant. The review on Wikipedia is a pretty accurate one:

  • Anonymous
    4 years, 1 month ago at Barnes & Noble

    1.0 / 5.0

    This was a ripoff of Platoon from the very beginning. Nothing in it is creative or informative. This did not show the peculiar despairing nature of Vietnam

  • Anonymous
    4 years, 1 month ago at Barnes & Noble

    4.0 / 5.0

    Can Not compare 4th. of july to this Movie. Maybe what it does wrong it presents the movie a as documentary. But if any of you guys care to read something about history "maybe u learn somethin in process" Then you will realize that this film is as true and authentic as the fallen trees on the side of the Hill. The 4th. is propaganda and only wanted to portrait the Vets as murders, drug heads etc.