Going Back (2001) Poster

(II) (2001)

User Reviews

Review this title
20 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
Far fetched, but catches the spirit of marines working together
mctexan20006 August 2005
This story of US Marines going back to Vietnam is far fetched and the flashbacks may be a pastiche of events involving a number of different units. However, they catch the spirit of interaction of Marines, their noncoms and officers. Ramsey is a very believable captain, but in reality, he would have been at least a company commander and would not have been so directly involved in unit leadership. Otherwise, his and his marines' interactions were consistent with my experience.

So take the plot with a grain of salt, but watch closely the way the marines and their Navy Hospital Corpsman and Chaplain go about their business. It will give you a good understanding of how marines think and act in a combat environment.
13 out of 15 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
WOW what a great movie and with total realism.
acearms16 January 2004
Warning: Spoilers
I was skeptical of this one at first, but after I got into it I was totally caught up. The acting was superb, the musical score equal to any "A" grade movie, the plot was there, realistic battle scenes and all extremely well done. The emotions displayed were those which one would expect of Marines or any combatants returning to a battle field of years gone by. We've seen it on the news when old soldiers return to battle fields in Europe, i.e. "D" Day and the cemeteries there. Old enemies become friends; there is a strong American presence in Vietnam today. The scenes of present day Siagon (Ho Che Min City) are true to life. The movie used flashbacks extremely well to tell the story and connect the present with the past. One spoiler for me was the love scene, predictable, but added nothing to the movie; it should of been left out. This definitely is not another run of the mill war movie about Vietnam, but one far above and worth the time it takes to watch it. WOW, what a great movie. I'll watch it again.
11 out of 13 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
View to Appreciate
myselfoncemore16 June 2008
This is not an "action" movie... this is a movie about what soldiers went through and how it affected their lives after they got back "to the world". Of course, no movie is "perfect and right on", but if you want insight into what some soldiers have gone through, don't miss this movie. I didn't agree with what some of the soldiers thought, but it's an excellent movie. I think they did their job and in defending our country, lived through extreme circumstances that most of us never think about.

From a civilian's point of view, this is a very believable movie. It's about soldiers who do their job and the mental toll that it takes.. it's about the Marine's code and how they live.. I think the end is not only worth the wait, but totally believable. No one can know what combat is like, or how a soldier will handle it, until they've been there.

It really makes you think about what our guys in Iraq, and those anywhere in combat, are going through, and have gone through. May no soldier go unloved... may no soldier be forgotten....
7 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Story of several soldiers looking for the truth.
dahstra5 July 2004
To start off, I have to say that the European name, "Going Back" really suited this movie better than "Under Heavy Fire." I'm not much of a war movie fan, but as I'm trying to see more of Casper's stuff I took a chance.

As this is a story about the soldiers, and not the War, it was much easier for me to enjoy it. It takes place in the present day, and only shows the war when being remembered, or as footage taken on the scene. It's about a US troop during the Vietnam War who experienced a tragedy by friendly fire, and they blamed their captain (Casper). In the present day a reporter / historian wanted to help the remaining troop relive this tragedy, by revisiting Vietnam and reenacting the event to help them figure out what really happened, thus "Going Back."

Most of the present day scenes felt genuine, and the War memory scenes were used strictly to clarify or enhance emotion and not just to show the War. There was an especially touching present day scene where a Vietnamese woman Captain Ramsey went to visit sings him a BEAUTIFUL song to thank, "A soldier who has lost his way."

Certainly worth my time to see.
5 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Great Movie A must see!!
sjohnson6729 July 2005
A really enjoyable movie. It had some great action sequences, that kept you glued to the TV. I liked the way Furie used the flash back sequences to tell the story. The movie moved along quite quickly and was very engaging. The worst part of the show was the make up people, trying to make the characters look old, other than that, this is a can't miss show. The subject of the film has been touched upon in other films, but not set to an entire movie. In saying that Furie did a great job conveying the story to the viewer. The cinematography was super. The locations in Vietnam looked sensational. It had a feel like you were actually there and could feel what they felt. This definitely ranks as one of my top 3 Vietnam movies I have seen so far. A must see for Vietnam war movie lovers!
7 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Pinnacle of Vietnam War Films
ltjcompton14 September 2003
With the gluttony of cliche Vietnam war films to have come out in the last ten years, I was skeptical at best when i heard of Under Heavy Fire. After watching this film, though, Sidney Furie has made me a believer once again. The plot puts a nice new twist on the genre, and Casper Van Dien's inspired performance truly captures what it was like to fight in the jungles of Vietnam. In the closing scene(s), director Furie and cinematographer Cutris Peterson coordinate their efforts and vividly and beautifully capture the spirit of brotherhood and camaraderie that exists between U.S. Marine Vietnam Veterans. 9.2/10
7 out of 12 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Although Partially Drawing Upon Actual Incidents, Artificial Treatment Along With Stereotypical Characters Vanquish The Picture.
rsoonsa14 December 2006
Since the ending of the Vietnam War, two principal styles of feature films have been produced revolving about that baleful event, one that emphasises scenes of frantic combat activity, the second stressing off-center characterization of United States military personnel, most often encumbered with tiresome politicizing anent the evil actions of corrupted American servicemen in contrast with the apparently innate dignity and humanity manifested by Vietnamese people; within this grotesquely melodramatic piece is included the worst aspects of each, with triteness lavishly added for good measure. The film opens with a military reunion organised by cinema documentarian Kathleen Martin (Carrè Otis) who has assembled six veterans from a heavily depleted U. S. Marine Echo Company, bringing about their rendezvous held in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) for the purpose of filming their impressions of erstwhile battlefields, and eventually to restage, if all agree, a controversial incident that had occurred during the war, later resulting in a court martial of the Company's leader, Captain Ramsey (Caspar Van Dien). The film wants narrative clarity, indeed even basic credibility, while plot execution is muddled; an altogether plodding and unpersuasive affair with wholesale utilisation of bromidic scenes, one even comprised of slow motion lovemaking by Van Dien and Otis. Stock footage of crowded streets in Ho Chi Minh City provide mild interest, while combat segments are largely effective, and editing is quite successful with flashbacks. However, the depiction of on-scene battle photography is unrealistically presented, and a droning score is of no assistance. It is best for this subject matter if it will be created by individuals who were there.
6 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Surprisingly effective war drama!
supertom-321 January 2003
This is a fairly morbid yet emotional war drama, starring Caper Van Dien and Carrie Otis. It is about a group of ex vietnam soldiers re-visiing aold battle gorunds years after the war. THye re-live memories of the war and remember things that they had tried to forget.

The film doesn't delve into the cliche bucket to many times as war films usually do and the script is fairly good. The actors perform well in some good roles but Casper Van Dien, who has the most important part, just cannot act. He almost ruins some emotional and effective scenes but is thankfully just rescued by some superior performance by people such as Jaimz Woolvett. The film is low budget but veteren director Sidney J Furie handles preceedings well, the guy definitely knows what he is doing. There are some good battle sequences, particularly in the last half. Overall this could have been better but it isn't bad, it is certainly better than some big budget stinkers like Windtalkers. 6/10
5 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
too bad
clvlkenpo13 August 2005
Would have been alright if they would have left out all the crying and "can't we all just get along: garbage. Battle scenes were OK and military language was accurate for USMC. No Captain would have allowed his men to mutiny without resorting to arrest or assault. Also, Caspers change of heart in the movie is incomprehensible given the set up to his character. Noticed that the Vietnamese Cultural Dept aided in this attempt to whitewash the North V. and Viet Cong atrocities which were well documented. Furthermore anyone who studies the war or reads the me moires of the North Vietnam Generals will really understand the war a lot better. As a vet from that era I submit that you can study the motives of both side to see who held the moral high ground. Likes the music in end credits the best. Don't watch the Deer Hunter, Apocalyse Now etc if you weren't around then except for entertainment.
8 out of 17 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Under heavy sedation
Sukebeboss9 December 2004
That's the only way I would ever sit through this piece of crap again. Even before seeing the credits, I could tell that it was a Canadian production. It has a cheesy low budget look. Bad acting, terrible make up, bad script and low production values. The plot was a tired and worn out premise; A Commander wrongfully accused of getting his men killed. From the first scene of the disputed event it's obvious, "The RTO did it". It seems to me that the Vietnamese Govt. gave the producers permission to film on location only if they put in a lot of revisionist history sprinkled with some American apologist B.S. smothered in "Peace loving peoples of Vietnam". The only redeeming qualities of this film are the location shots and the relatively authentic period US military equipment.
8 out of 18 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Not for veterans
konstan15 August 2002
It is not serious "vietnam movie". It is melodramatic and unconvincing. Casper Van Dien's character is a plastic toy but not a real man. Story may be is not hopeless but realization is poor. Ending is funny.
5 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Garbage (communist propaganda)
pocomarc26 February 2017
Manuel Jose from Spain wrote a terrific review of this movie.

Here it is, below.

by Manuel Jose from Spain 14 August 2006

Movie filmed with supervision of Vietnamese communist regime

This movie sounds like communist propaganda most of the time. When they go like: " Vietcong fought for love to Vietnamese people..." Let's look at the facts- Probably the Vietcong and North Vietnam Army (NVA) committed more mass-murders in South Vietnam than the SS in the whole Russia during the WWII. Everyone suspicious of not being supportive towards the communist cause was killed by communist militias, no matter children, elder people... Specially Hmong people, who were assassinated in a grand-scale by NVA. The American Army and specially the Special Operation forces served and protected ethnic groups such as Hmong, Kha, Meo...

This movie focuses in 1968, when the Stalin-like mass-murderer Ho Che Minh decided to launch a brutal strike with the intention of defeating America's will to persevere and win the war. The truth is that American troops won every major battle but the feeling was that this war couldn't be finished in a short period.

We see some atrocities committed by US soldiers, and you see this movie is completely manipulated by communist propaganda- exactly as if this movie was directed by a Vietnamese communist Goebbels. The vast majority of brutal criminal acts, mutilations, murders were committed by Vitcong and NVA. Hundred if not thousands of villages were destroyed by NVA during the war. South Vietnamese people were terrified with the Vietcong mass-murder squadrons.

All in all if you know how to differentiate facts from rhetoric, this movie could be interesting at specific moments.

Nevertheless the rhetorical anti-American long-winded verbose when they go like " The American men are the devious, scheming evil and the other people are the victims..." That was the communist propaganda in the third world during the 20th century and everybody intelligent enough should discern between precise facts and rhetoric pro-communist or anti-western points of view.
3 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Got to me - Soldiers looking for the truth in their past
marcm422 August 2005
First off this is not really a war movie. It is set in the (when it was made) present day. Viet Nam is my generation's war. How we lived with it, how we lived after it, shaped my generation. This movie is a look into the emotional roller-coaster that re-living the war can be for those who were there. The war scenes are used to illuminate the present day conflicts.

Maybe it was because I saw this at 2 AM, maybe it just brought back some memories; I don't know. Casper Van Dien is a little light for the lead, I admit, but the writing and pacing on this film are very effective. Listen to the words and watch some very good acting by the rest of the cast.

The American video title of "Under Heavy Fire" is just wrong. Even when I try to justify it by the heavy emotional fire soldiers took coming home it doesn't work. The plot, a journalist taking a group of Marines back to Viet Nam to re-live a tragic event, is almost wish fulfillment for some of us.

It is a movie about the soldiers, not the war. It is a deeper look than I expected at the cost of surviving when so many didn't. The war scenes were believable, although light by some standards. The present day scenes were well done and believable, with some very powerful moments.

It's well worth the time to watch.
3 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
War buddy's go back to Nam,to find peace in there mind.
One_Shot_One_Kill28 July 2002
A reporter goes to Vietman with 6 former war buddy's to find out, What really happen'd in the War there. A movie played in the present,with flashback's to 1960's.

The same actors in the past and in the present,sometime's a good thing, sometime's not.In this case the actors did well.

Casper van Diem play's Cap.Ramsey a young leader of Echo Company. He knows what has happened and want's to let it rest,But the rest of 5 war buddy's don't...

A Good Vietnam movie with a good story. I give it a 6, in a scale from 1 to 10.
3 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
nogodnomasters3 May 2019
Warning: Spoilers
This is a rather long film about a troop of Vietnam vets who return to Vietnam to visit their demons and reenact "the incident." A camera crews follows the group so Deborah Zoe can have a nude scene. Basic scenario: Vietnam good. America bad. I personally don't have trouble watching something showing us the Vietnamese were human, but some people might. Numerous flashbacks.

Casper Van Dien with "A positive blood" played the captain of the group and was far less convincing than when he was killing bugs. The ending of the film lets us know this was based on a true story by Sidney J. Furie. I liked the background setting. The film was more about the drama than a war story. If you like to watch gritty scenes of "B" actors lament for dead comrades 32 years after the fact, this film has all of that.

Guide F-bomb, sex, nudity. Available on a 12 pack "Under Fire" $5.00 US Walmart.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Rises Slightly Above an Average B Movie
Jennel29 July 2003
Sidney Furie has taken something of the low road since those promising early films in the seventies, including another Vietnam movie, "The Boys in Company C." "Going Back," or "Under Heavy Fire," the new video title is not in the class of that earlier effort, but I give Furie credit for trying to make a statement about this increasingly forgotten war which left so many scars on us as individuals and a society. Neither the budget nor some of the actors are up to the task of presenting the kind of film Furie wanted to make here, and the overall compromises to the B movie market ultimately sink the director's finer aspirations. Still, credit must be given for the attempt. Especially in a time when the far right is offering revisionist fantasies like "We Were Soldiers" in an attempt to convince a new generation that this ugly, horrible war was somehow noble. Perhaps some of those who pick up this video expecting a gung ho war movie will be persuaded by its tone to see that this was not a victory to be celebrated, but a hard lesson in the limits of our power. This is a lesson our current president sorely needs to learn.
3 out of 10 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
roybatty-120 April 2004
The above is what fell out of my mouth during the final 20 minutes of this film. I've never laughed so hard at bad acting, cheesy sentiment, and overwrought "drama" before seeing this farce. Utterly ludicrous dialogue permeates the film but it never seems overly unwatchable until we enter the home stretch. Until then, it is a mildly enjoyable exercise, filled with decent costumes, vehicles, and locations (including genuine Vietnam footage --- nice). I'd rented on a whim expecting nothing, so I was surprised that it at least looked accurate and wasn't boring.

However, the movie's ultimate undoing is its commitment to the most overt and silly sentimentality this side of the "tell me I'm a good man" framing sequence from SAVING PRIVATE RYAN. The filmmakers milk it for all its worth and believe me it isn't worth much. Endless 'crying' scenes in slow motion, repeated 'breaking down' scenes, slamming of fists against walls, brotherly hugs, etc, beg the question if this was not all meant as satire.

A handful of scenes work fairly well --- the battle for Hue City is harrowing and exciting, and a "tunnel rat" sequence is suspenseful even though preceeded by the silliest on-the-nose dialogue imaginable. One bit involving a spare fuel pod in a treeline is cartoonishly innovative but seems more fit to MISSING IN ACTION than a movie meant to be taken seriously.

Ultimately the movie fails as it adds nothing to the played-out genre of the 'Vietnam film.' "War is bad!" --- check. "You wouldn't understand because you weren't there!" --- check. "It was a massacre!!!" --- check. All it lacks is a gruff Air Cav officer admonishing his troops that CHARLIE DON'T SURF!!!! Then we'd have had something.
3 out of 10 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
The Vietnam Experience of Echo Company
bkoganbing10 April 2016
Some good performances from Casper Van Dien and the supporting cast in Going Back make up for a rather indifferent production of this Canadian based film about the Vietnam experience of Echo Company and the survivors of same.

Echo company was commanded by Captain Casper Van Dien and he's by all accounts a perfect Marine role model. The company took some very heavy casualties during the Tet Offensive and Van Dien and those few like Sergeant Bobby Hosea and others are all that's left.

Filming all this is Carre Otis as these survivors visit Vietnam during the Nineties as part of a Vietnamese government program to try and heal the old war wounds. They run pretty deep in the survivors of Echo Company.

In the Tet Offensive and the aftermath the company is involved with both the accidental killing of civilians and a case of mutiny with some would be Fletcher Christians making some all around bad choices. But some buried truths finally see the light of day.

Standing out among the supporting performances is Martin Kove who plays a Marine chaplain. Quite a different Kove do we see than we know from Cagney&Lacey and the Karate Kid movies.

Going Back is not in the class of Casualties Of War which I consider the best Vietnam War film or Platoon. But it definitely is worthwhile viewing.
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
I am amazed
savagecharmed1 July 2003
I enjoyed this movie, even with it being a war movie. I watched it and found that I was very amazed how much I enjoyed it. I loved the twist to it, and the way the character's seem to change as they remembered more. For the same reason I watched the movie, Casper Van Dien just gives the movie that special passion, and the best reason to watch any movie ever.
2 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
A good non budget Canadian film
nicbutch20 July 2006
I never tough that i would like this movie that much. First of all, i was surprised by the fact that this movie was Canadian, and it's weird for a Canadian movie to deal with the American Vietnam war.

The action in this movie is incredible. You'll see plane, tank and Huey helicopter, i am still wondering where the old Sidney J. Furie find this kind of money to do his film.

But now let's come to the serious stuff, the acting in this war film isn't good, but it's not bad either. They did what they could with what they got and the final results is quite impressive.

I recommend this movie for anyone who's like me, if you love war film and you are tired of the Hollywood's version of it, this may be a film that you'll enjoyed. This is not a 100 millions dollars budget movie, so if you watch it keep that in mind when you are going to see the representation of the city of Hue in the 60's. You'll think like me...
1 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews

Recently Viewed