|Genre: War, Drama, Infidelity, Love Triangle, Erotic, Tear Jerker, Military, Psychodrama, Marriage, Mental Illness, Love, Doctor|
Tagline: A man who believed in war! A man who believed in nothing! And a woman who believed in both of them!
Plot: When Sally Hyde’s (Jane Fonda) husband, a ramrod-straight marine captain, Bob Hyde (Bruce Dern), is sent to Vietnam, she leaves the isolated world of the officer’s quarters and begins volunteer social work at the veterans hospital. There her unthinking support of the war and her blindness to its effects are challenged by meeting the crippled men struggling to recover, psychologically as well as physically, from their time in country. Many, like Luke Martin (Jon Voight), now a paraplegic, are embittered and full of unfocused, uncontrollable rage, which he takes out on the prim, controlled Sally. Interestingly, they went to the same large high school, but she was a pretty, popular cheerleader type and he was just a guy in the back of the class. Gradually, as she changes politically (always signaled by changes in hair and fashion) and he recovers emotionally, they become friends and then lovers. This causes a sexual awakening in Sally that furthers her transformation from a repressed wife to an independent woman. Then her husband comes home.
Hal Ashby’s film, with its classic rock soundtrack and lush photography by Haskel Wexler, submerged its politics in a warm nostalgia, although it was made just a few years after the war ended. Still, it’s theme of individual transformation,
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| Directed by|
Being There, Harold and Maude, The Last Detail