Green Berets Film Analysis

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Jeramie Mann
Vietnam War History
Green Beret Film Analysis

In the film The Green Berets, the director, John Wayne incorporates many anti-communism and pro South Vietnam messages and themes. For instance, the demonstration of why America should be fighting the war is in the very beginning of the movie, and goes over many reasons why we should be fighting communism. Another, at the very end of the film when Hamchuck asks “What will happen to me now?” and Kirby responds with “You let me worry about that... you're what this things all about.” Hamchuk is symbolic for the South Vietnamese people, and Kirby is reassuring that the U.S. Is fighting for them. John Wayne uses a few examples of symbolism to get across his message. As mentioned, Hamchuck is symbolic for South Vietnam, and how it's condition has deteriorated. Hamchuck is an orphan who only has his dog and the U.S. Army, much how South Vietnam has lost it's “family” and is depending on the U.S. Initially, the reporter George Beckworth represents the “uninformed” American public who are against the war. As the film progresses, George says he now supports the war now that he's seen it first hand, where Wayne believes the American public would probably also support it if they saw the country themselves. Lastly, Peterson represents the soldiers who lost their lives for the cause. Wayne acknowledges the war isn't without a price, but it's one worth paying to fight communism and help South Vietnam.
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