The documentary series of ten chapters is a shocking experience, which provides a good perspective and teaches us about Vietnam’s history during the hard times of war through which it happened.
I can bet that I have seen innumerable series of many characters. But I can not lie to you here when I tell you about this documentary series that caught me personally. This is The Vietnam War, the ten-part series, directed by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick. In this case the war in that country is a very good topic to start talking about, among many others. From communism, the changing ideas of what it means to be a patriot and the history of European colonialism in Asia, throughout this short series, Burns and Novick put into research the many mistakes of US foreign policy for those times, giving it is a teaching that offers such intelligent reflections, both for the present and the past in the 60s.
The Vietnam is a very immersive experience as I had said before. If it deals well, with old images, interviews and a narrator.
Each chapter has a duration of 2 hours, an hour and a half: in the beginning it is natural to be skeptical and not to trust that a series of this nature, and this length manages to trap us. But veterans Burns and Novick, with the help of a script magnificently written by Geoffrey C. Ward, do it. The second episode talks about the first battle on Vietnamese soil advised by Americans (a total failure), and the result does not ask for anything at the beginning of Gaving Private Ryan, while the end of that same chapter unfolds as an extraordinary Thriller of the Cold War.
The Vietnam War, covers a lot, but never forgets the human element. Burns and Novick often start or close the episodes with chilling testimonies from both Vietnamese and American soldiers, we see the armed conflict at a distance, as in a history class, and then we go down into the jungle, side by side with those who participated in the war, the impressions that the documentary leaves are too complex to summarize in a review. The clearest reflection, however, is that it’s worth it for people who do not get used to reading history.
The greatest success of Burns and Novick is never to reduce their heroes, victims, or villains. In a world divided into fractions, increasingly polarized. There is no greater lesson than that as with everything that touches The Vietnam War communicates this splendidly.
The third chapter is when Hanoi takes advantage of the chaos and sends soldiers to the south, to resist, and President Johnson authorizes a bombing and a deployment of ground troops. Whose chapter leaves you shocked.
In the fourth chapter the American soldiers discover that the Vietnamese war is not what they expected. Troops and
supplies advance on the Ho Chi Minh route in January 1966 and June 1967.
The fifth has the title “This is what we do” President Johnson assures the Americans that all is well and the great victory is near. But the ambushes increase more and more and the number of victims. At that time Hanoi plans a surprise offensive.
Without much to say … It is really extraordinary this plot, which talks about what lived those millions of people, it is interesting and emotional to see what they lived in the flesh. It is a very good way to learn about this war.
Please watch online over at youtube: