- Information at Internet Movie Database
- Roger Ebert Review, Chicago Sun-Times
- Cinema In Focus Review, Hal Conklin and Denny Wayman
- Hollywood Jesus Visual Review
- Review by Jeffrey Overstreet at Looking Closer
- "We Were Soldiers," by Cliff Vaughn, EthicsDaily.com, at thefilmforum.com
- Supportive Community
in Time of Great Trial/Stress
- MOVIE: "We Were Soldiers" (DVD ONLY!) (starring Mel
ILLUSTRATES: THE STRENGTH OF THE FAITH COMMUNITY TO SUPPORT US AT OUR MOST CRITICAL TIMES OF NEED, AND TO UNDERGIRD OUR FAITH WHEN WE, ON OUR OWN, MIGHT FALTER.
SCENE: Go to "special features", then "deleted scenes," and select "the church."
This deleted scene from the movie takes place back in the states at the protestant chapel on the base from which the 7th Infantry, First Division had been deployed in Nov. of 1965 to Vietnam. The division was the first to enter into direct combat with the North Vietnamese army.
The scene depicts the families (mostly the wives) of the soldiers, who are in church days after their husbands have gone off to war, and as we see in the very beginning of the clip, even as their husbands are on the choppers taking them to the battlefield. One of the young wives is introduced by the pastor, and is to sing the "Offertory Hymn." She begins, tentatively, singing the opening words from "My Hope is Built."
She soon falters, apologizes and begins again, but again falters and cannot continue. After a couple of seconds, you hear the sound of another woman singing, "On Christ the solid rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand." It is the wife of the commander of the division, and soon the other wives, and then the entire congregation are singing.
This is a wonderful illustration of how, when we are afraid, or unsure of our faith, or under some extreme trial, the faith community undergirds us, and reminds us of the faith that we, by ourselves, may not be able to articulate or even access.
As the scene ends (and this might be another illustration entirely) the people are singing, "all other ground is sinking sand," as the scene shifts back to the medivac helicopter approaching the battlefield in Vietnam.
As to the entire film, it is, as you might imagine, bloody and violent, but also very human and sensitive to the horrible suffering that is war, not only for combatants, but for their families and loved ones. It is also a story of courage, as the commander's wife, learning that the Army is notifying wives of their husbands' death by sending telegrams delivered by cab drivers, tells the driver, "If there are any more telegrams, tell the taxi company to being them to me." She, and another wife, then take on themselves the task of going to each wife and personally delivering the tragic news. (Paul Wiberg)
- MOVIE: "We Were Soldiers" (DVD ONLY!) (starring Mel Gibson)
- Supportive Community in Time of Great Trial/Stress