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Vietnam Rambo/The Deer Hunter Essay

866 words - 3 pages

Rambo and The Deer Hunter "Do we get to win this time?" (Franklin 78). A famous quote from the infamous Rambo First Blood II film. And how could we forget the ending song to The Deer Hunter? "God Bless America". Both of these films take two big named actors, Robert De Niro and Sylvester Stallone and turn them into American Heroes.In this paper I will be focusing on the "point of view" of the soldier, usually from the perspective of a victim. Rambo and Michael (De Niro) are representing the idea of the "manly man", running through the jungle with no shirts on, sweating profusely and caring big guns. They are the epitome of "man", strong willed and tough. What a real soldier should be.The Deer Hunter doesn't attempt a realistic recreation in fictional terms of the complexities of the war nor rejects U.S. military involvement in Vietnam. The subject is not war, or the effect of the war and the anti war movement upon American culture from 1964 to 1973, but American culture and society after the war as the 1970s drew to a close. The Deer Hunter attempts to view Vietnam from the common-man perspective (D/M 22).In Rambo, Vietnam has become the setting for fables that ideologically reproduce their time with clear insinuation for the direction of American foreign policy (D/M 23).In this film John Rambo starts off breaking rocks in a prison as a punishment for rebelling against the brutal lawmen of First Blood (1982). He is offered freedom in exchange for going on an undercover mission to look for POW/MIA's in Vietnam, not knowing that he's going to be screwed over by his lieutenant.The Deer Hunter, released in 1978, is a film more about a group of working class friends from a steel town who bear tribulations together, rather than Vietnam. Most of the sequences in Vietnam take place either in Saigon or with the three friends as captives. The film also staggers in symbolism, with Russian roulette used by the Vietcong captors to torture the American soldiers. This is only one of the extremely unrealistic aspects of the film, including a thirty-ish Robert De Niro as a young soldier.The film has been compared to a Western, with the villainous Vietnamese as the Indians and the American soldiers as the cowboys. It is the Vietnamese who commit murder against civilians, not American soldiers. The very negative portrayal of the Vietnamese as tormenters of American soldiers helped in the portrayal of American soldiers in Vietnam as hard-working men believing in good values who were broken by the war, but not by any fault of the American government. All the...

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