The War
The War

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Customer Reviews:

  • Boring and predictable sentimentality
    Snoozer. The faked accents are over-the-top and make it difficult to understand some dialog. The blatant symbolism is predictable. An obvious ripoff of To Kill A Mockingbird with the girl's narration/flashback to formative childhood experiences. Yawn....more info
  • The War is a great film!
    It's a great bit of nostalgia about a low income family's struggles in the South around the time of the Vietnam War. There are many things going on. A father who returns from the war disturbed, with lingering emotional problems. White and black children playing and growing together, puzzled by the concept of racism still lingering. A feud with a trashy gang of kids from across town. The desire to move up in the world and find better living conditions. There's heartbreak, suspense, and some comedy. Breathtaking scenes of the rural south where you can almost feel the heat. Characters that seem very real. Elijah Wood is fantastic and his accent sounds authentic. My only complaint is that he was a positively GORGEOUS boy at the time, like a piece of fine art to look at, and they shouldn't have sheared all his beautiful hair off for this role. It's supposed to be 1970, not 1953! Most boys didn't have crew-cuts in 1970! If he'd had hair in this film like he'd had in 'The Adventures of Huck Finn' the camera would've exploded to bits from his physical perfection as well as his flawless performance!...more info
  • What's worth fighting for...
    The war is a very good movie with a very good slogan (what's worth fighting for..) It's an amazing story and the actors are heartwarming. Everyone acts really well, but Elijah Wood deserves some extra credit here. He proves once again that he's one of the best actors of his age. The war is a movie with a great concept and great scenes, especially the one with the treehouse. In this movie they focus on the real war, but also on the war with yourself and the war between children (treehouse scene). It's a must see movie....more info
  • One of the best movies you've never seen
    Admittedly, I at first rented this movie for Elijah Wood, for whom I suffered a short obsession beginning in the summer of 2001. But, as I came to know his work, I became slightly less interested in him and more so in his films.
    First of all, the acting in this movie is very good, especially for being comprised of an almost all-child cast. There is no doubt in anyone's mind that these people really are poverty-stricken Mississippians in the 1970's. The message of the movie is powerful and effective, and my belief is that it is the closest Elijah Wood ever came to Academy Award-worthy acting in his career.
    In addition to incredible acting by both Wood and Kevin Costner, the film also boasts an excellent soundtrack with 60's music by artists such as the Supremes, and a score by Thomas Newman, who found more recent exposure with the films Pay it Forward and Erin Brockovich.
    Do yourself a favor and see this feel-good movie about family values, and wholly, about morals. It is a great movie to sit down and watch with the kids, and with moments funny, sad, and suspenseful, it won't be boring for anyone....more info
    I had never heard of this film before the New Year. Considering it was released well over a decade ago, I was surprised how good it was. The story is about a struggling poor family told by their little girl's point of view. The cast shine in this engrossing well made tale, which can be summed up by one line Kevin Costner's character says to his young son. "It only takes a second to do something you'll regret for the rest of your life"!....How true! The film has several small stories going on throughout and while they are interesting and well acted, they never seemed to go any deeper than the skin. I did enjoy this film a lot and I'm sure I will watch it again but, it just didn't quite go for the jugular, like I had hoped. As far as content goes......I have read some reviews stating that this film is not suitable for kids. I think PG says it all and I think kids could learn a lot from this picture if, watched with a caring adult who would talk through some issues in this movie. This is a movie, well worth seeing!...more info
  • and critics dont like it that much
    You know, i dont understand sometimes why the critics gnaw on such films as this and "pay it forward"
    i dont know what they expect from a film but this one delivers.
    Elijah Wood is perfectly cast alongside kevin costner(who is a co-star). "The War" in question is not what you would expect to find in this film, it refers to one of two possibilities.
    1)the war that is going on in kevin costner's head, having just returned from one, and the problems the family has to face or
    2) the war between the kids, which would be my guess. I dont realy know what else to say but i will tell you that Elijah is a pleasure to watch. personaly, he is a far better actor than McCauly culkin ever was. He has a natural gift for accents (eg. the adventures of huckleberry finn).
    so if you are looking for a film that gives you more out of it than you would expect then this is the one. there is a message or two in this one, so check it out. you wont be dissapointed, i gaurantee it....more info
  • A good film
    The War is a good, but a bit dark and sad film. This is certainly not the mainstream, so do not look for a happy ending. But if you are looking for a film which makes you think a lot about it afterwards, in which the characters continue to live their lives in your mind, the film with a thoughtfulness and beauty in it, also conveying strong messages - then the War is for you.

    The storyline is good and interesting, although a bit sad. But I wouldn't call it a hard film, watching is not disturbing at all. Amazing acting, of course, adds a lot to this film. Little Elijah Wood is simply amazing, Cavin Costner is adorable. I gave it 4 stars because I usually prefer more cheerful films, but apart from this sad aspect, this film is a beautiful and worhty experience. ...more info
  • A Fantastic Box Office Sleeper
    This is one of my all time favorite movies, "lipstick and rouge" is now a favorite way to describe all the superficial elements of life. This is a meaning of life movie, packed full of values for every age group. Enjoy and Savor!...more info
  • An Entertaining Movie With A Positive Message
    The War is an exceptionally acted beautiful movie with a message that is rarely sent through movies in this day and age. In a time when most movies make the statement that the only way to deal with problems is to fight them, The War tells us that there is another way which may be a little harder but gets more results in the end. And it does it in a beautiful and entertaining way. I enjoyed everything about this movie from the actors chosen to portray the characters to the masterful direction of the story. EVERYtime I watch this movie I get teary eyed but I always go away from it feeling good. I love this movie....more info
  • a must see for every family, the absolute best!
    Movie explores relationships between parents and children, and children with children. It breaks through racial barriers and teaches some very valuable lessions, a reality check for people who have lost compassion for the poor. The mom, Mare Winningham is supurb!!...more info
  • Overly sentimental and predictable
    Wanted to like the movie more, but it is entirely too sentimental, predictable, and pat -- you can watch it and say "Oh, here's where the dad gets to redeem himself" or "Guardian angel talk -- guess one of them will end up dead" or "Aha, the conflict between the kids mirrors the dad's war", and on and on. Got tired of being beat over the head with entirely obvious parallels and symbolisms. Kevin Costner was way too clean-cut and well-dressed to come across as an impoverished Vietnam vet with PTSD. On a more positive note, Elijah Wood was quite good; his southern accent was a lot better than Costner's. And the movie effectively conveys the mood of a hot, rural summer with almost no parental supervision. Note to parents: There's a lot of violence between children in this movie, and one extremely tense scene involving a decrepit water tower. I won't be showing it to my kids (age 3 and 6)....more info
  • Elijah wood was awesome!
    The War was a very good movie...more info
    THE WAR is the best movie I have seen in years! The performance by Elijah Jordan Wood should have gotten him an Oscar nomination! It left me in tears wanting more. The moral of the story is so deep and makes you think. This is what movies are all about...not special effects and big money! You must BUY this movie NOW! I would seriously give it an OSCAR for BEST PICTURE!...more info
  • Flawed, but a good addition to a family's collection
    Depending on your reason for watching or buying this movie, it's either a 3 star (average) or 5 star (good deal). This is a movie I wouldn't rent for pure entertainment, but one I wanted to own as part of the family library.

    The object of watching this particular movie isn't entertainment, but education. If you put aside the second storyline in this movie (Kevin Costner's war vet psychological flashback bit), it becomes a great movie.

    The second plot - perhaps added because the filmakers thought adults needed something grown-up to entertain them (the movie would have been fine without, as was Stand By Me) or maybe added to make Costner's role a bit meatier - actually takes away from the movie's tone and clear message. War is a dangerous solution to problems that could be dealt with in other ways.

    Set in the South sometime in the 70's, Elijah Wood and his siblings are in the midst of an on-going battle with neighborhood bullies, whose father is a racist and bully.

    While the father struggles with the aftermath of being a failure at war - the bullies and their dad label him as a coward, and in their view, he supports this by teaching his kids that fighting isn't the way to solve problems (although in one scene he loses it for a moment) - the kids begin a small war over some turf they've built with supplies pilfered from the bully dad's junkyard.

    The highlight of the film is the kids battle, shown in slow motion and with sound effects of a real war, which make it clear that we're comparing this dangerous fight the kids are having with the external war their father fought.

    The attempt to give almost equal play to Costner's inner struggle takes away from the movie, if you're looking at it as a pure entertainment piece. I push it aside as a minor annoyance, and my son focuses on the kids.

    It is in our family library because we like books about war that can be viewed by the family and encourage conversation. It doesn't have to be perfect (and the acting and filming in this movie are well above average), it just has to help with the family dialogue!...more info

  • A Real Struggle
    When Kevin Kostner does supra-realistic (as in Waterworld or The Postman) I can tolerate the lapses in factuality. This movie supposedly takes place in Mississippi in 1970 according to the blurb on the back cover. He plays a Viet Nam vet who has kids approaching their teens. It is an important part of the plot that he went through boot camp with a buddy that he had to decide to leave behind after a fire fight in Nam. If Kostner has almost preteen kids, he started raising a family before the war became escalated so it is highly unlikely he would have gone to Nam.

    But granted that were the case, there are at least two parallel plots. One is the Kostner must struggle with having left that buddy behind. The other is that his kids are trying to build a treehouse which they must defend against a thuggy rival group. Kostner must pass on his values to his own kids. In a scene in which one is reminded of a Viet Nam fire fight, Kostner's kids and their allied defend the treehouse and incidentally save the life of one of the thuggies.

    Life is a war, says one of the characters, where you forget what you were fighting for. I'll agree with that. It was a real struggle to muddle through this movie. You forget why you wanted to see this movie in the first place. Kostner's character dies trying to save a co-worker. If there is a redemption here it is only for Kostner. His family will move to a larger house, but only because of a flukish bank need to write off a bad debt for only a few hundred dollars.

    Does his family learn what really is worth fighting for? I would say that the movie shows that they already knew. If the reader thinks otherwise, the reader can write down what s/he thinks the family learned and spin back to the beginning. Like I said, a real struggle....more info
  • Profiles in courage
    The war is a Kevin Costner movie, which is to say its a tad too long, and is likely to give you food for thought.

    The War is a movie my wife and I have watched several times, and always come away moved. "The War" is the Story of a veteran who comes home from Viet Nam damaged with PTSD, in a time when help was not available, and the stigma of mental health disorders was considerable. It is the story of a boy who is conflicted between loving and being ashamed of his father. It is a story of poverty as a great equalizer, and of friendship. Finally it is a story about courage and cowardice in many forms.

    So here's the deal, this isn't a fun movie, it isn't entertaining, but it is a moving tale that will give you things to think about....more info
  • Great movie
    I was pleasantly surprised at how good this movie was. I had never heard of it before, and was a little concerned at the subject. Some war movies have been too graphic. How nice to see that it was actually a coming-of-age story with great actors and a worth-while message....more info
  • Awesome movie
    A rare find. I did not pause it for one second. This is from the director of "Fried Green Tomatoes". So that should tell you alot. A very well made film, of a family struggling to make ends meet, and a father coming home with his nightmares....more info
  • The War wins many kudos
    The War is an amazing film. An engaging, multifaceted storyline (involving wars both inward and outward) and exquisite acting, particularly from Elijah Wood (as Stu) and Lexi Randall (as Stu's sister Lidia) combine to make this one of the best films of 1994. Kevin Costner and Mare Winningham, as the children's parents, also turn in remarkable performances, but Elijah Wood steals the show....more info
  • One of the best, a must see movie!
    If you liked stand by me, this is even better. one of my all time favorites.dang dittly dang....more info
  • the war
    I was very happy to know that amazon had the movie in stock. The price was very reasonable. It came in the mail quickly and the shipping and handling was great. I am very happy with amazon....more info
  • Beautiful film by a talented and underrated director
    "The War" is an underrated film by an equally underrated director. Jon Avnet, who made this film, also made "Fried Green Tomatoes" which just happens to be my favorite movie of all-time (actually, "The War" comes in second). It is a beautiful film which provokes many thoughts in the people who watch it. The movie handles subject matter that has not been hit upon enough in Hollywood: that of the crisis between a son and his father directly following the Vietnam War, where Sr. suffers from shell-shock. The film delivers a punch in the way that the characters are faced with an inner war coupled with the physical one which the entire family is facing at the time. For the father, played by Kevin Costner, it is the loss of a friend in the War, and for the son, Stu, played wonderfully by child star Elijah Wood, it is the fight over a beloved treehouse. Others who figure into the mix, are Stu's mother, played by Mare Winningham, a woman who works two jobs just to support her family and Stu's sister, played by Lexi Randall in a performance which is well beyond it's years. One of the more humorous moments in the film occurs between Stu's sister and her friend, a little black girl named Elverdene (I believe). It begins with her teacher, played by Christine Baranski telling Elverdene to move to the back of the classroom. The rest should be experienced. The film, as I've said is beautiful. Jon Avnet excells once again, with a family tale never before seen in such light. Enjoy!...more info
  • Flawed, but still one of my favorites
    When I first saw this movie, I remember thinking Elijah Wood is one of the most amazing actors of the times. Even at his age, he was almost upstaging Kevin Costner. I was blown away at his natural talent, and I loved watching him. He has a great way of showing his emotion through his eyes.

    Although the movie sometimes is overwritten and wordy, for me it never takes away how wonderful it is to watch. The cast does an amazing job with the sometimes too corny script and makes it all work. Definitely one of my all time favorite movies. If you're just in it to watch a good movie, and not get too critical, you're going to adore it. I gave it 5 stars, even though I said it was flawed, because the movie it self makes up for whatever silly flaws were in the script and directing. The actors are amazing, and do a wonderful job with what is given to them...more info

  • A great one is upstaged!
    Kevin Kostner is one of the great actors of out time and he was at his best in The War. His part alone makes this a great movie to watch. But he was upstaged, believe it or not, by a boy! Elijah Wood simply stole the movie! His acting skills just keep getting better. His range of emotion and his believability are incredible! His big blue eyes pull you in and his acting keeps you there....more info
  • Heartwarming family drama?
    I went into this thinking it would be a fairly lighthearted view of one family's troubles living in 1970 Mississippi. After one viewing, I was shocked. Shocked enough to end up watching it three times in two days.

    Are people really so mean to one another? Adults will stand by while a child gets beaten by a gang? People will purposefully ram other cars when they break down in the road? Children will fight and do life-threatening dares for property? You bet. This reality was what made this movie so compelling and unique in a world of bland, "let's not be controversial" movies.

    It isn't perfect, by any means. It's too long, has too many sub-stories to successfully complete them all, and is downright cheesy at times. But in terms of acting, Costner combines the haunted vet and nuturing father together believeably, and all the children are well done (there are some great faces, really interesting to look at). The most interesting relationship was between the three girls: a relationship which succesfully merged race, strength, loyalty, and good old fashioned girliness. Elijah Wood also has some truly great moments.

    The children's war was horrifying, and by far the best part of the movie. I couldn't look at the screen the first time I watched it because it was so disturbing (not because it's violent, but because it's kids who obviously don't realize the seriousness of the situation). It's a really good piece of work, transitioning from innocent to vicious so smoothly the viewers don't consciously realize there was even a shift. Very very well done.

    The thing I like about The War is that I still find myself thinking about it weeks later. Not so much about war itself, but about children and growing up, and losing the things you love. Only good movies make you do that....more info

  • A film that can make a family come together!
    From the director of "Fried Green Tomatoes" brings you this realistic masterpiece of different emotions a typical southern family could have experinced in the early seventies relating to friendships and duals of both the adolescences and adults. With an outstanding soundtrack very fitting for the times I invite you along with others to sit down and enjoy this remarkable film with a talented cast which will in turn give you a new perception on life!...more info
  • reminds me of TX as a kid
    The culture of the film reminded me of being a kid in Texas when it was still wild, like this movie. Kind of scary- I knew kids like those at the junkyard. ...more info
  • One awesome movie!
    Wow,The War was a good movie.It was the only movie to make me cry
    besides Armaggeddon.Elijah Wood is so adorable,and Kevin Costner
    is cool.All of the actors did a wonderful job in this movie!...more info
  • Elijah W. is amazing in "The War"!
    Elijah Wood is protraying his best character he has ever done, His emotions are very real and he seems like he real is Stu. I cannot even belive that he is from Iowa and not from Texas. That is one of the reasons why I love EW and I want to marry him.
    But I think that Kevin Costner could have done a better job. He was as good as Elijah Wood or the actress who did the mom. It would have been better if Mel Gibson did the father.
    But I belive that Elijah Wood was the biggest and best actor in the entire movie....more info
  • The War
    Anyone who could possibly give this movie a bad review is an idiot.
    This is one of if not the Best movies I have ever seen. I recommend to all.
    One thing I have noticed in other reviews is no one has mentioned the sound track which to me plays a big part in getting you into the feel of this movie. One scene in which Costner teaches his Son to forgive his enemies(a group of poor kids) whom he has just had a fight with and been beaten up by and then Costner gives them the Cotton Candy they had got for their mother, when his son asks him why he gave it to them he replies "Because they look like nobody has given them anything in a long time" This was a powerful scene which even brought a tear to my eyes.
    All I can say is SEE THIS MOVIE especially if you are from the South you will understand it better and appreciate its dialog.
    I promise you will love this film as I do and will want to add it to your collection to view again and again. ...more info
  • Great performances, muddled message
    It's a shame the director got carried away with his his child villains in this film, because the message could have been so powerful. As it is, however, we can't seem to decide...ARE some things really worth fighting for, or is violence ALWAYS wrong? Try as he might, 13 year old Stu (Elijah Wood in an absolutely brilliant performance) simply cannot diffuse the violence of the family of juevenile delinquents who are out to get him. What starts out as self-defense quickly escalates into an endless cycle of meaningless violence, but does that mean he was wrong to stand up for himself? I think in the end the movie asks more questions than it answers, which after all may not be a bad thing.

    Be that as it may, The War delivers some of the best characters I've ever seen in a film...Costner's sensitive, loving but troubled father was heart-wrenching, and all the young actors delivered strong, believable performances. I particularly look for great things to come from Wood, one of the best child actors of all time....more info

  • Perfect movie
    The best movie I have ever seen! All the actors did a great job, Elijah Wood did a excelent job same with, Kevin Costner and Lexi Randall. I liked Lexi the best cuz she is cute and she is very gifted and my opinion she should be greatful to God for giving her such talent. Very heart warming movie at the end I was crying. "War is like a big machine that no one really knows how to run and when it gets out of control it ends up destroying the things you thought you were fighting for, and a lot of other things you kinda forgot you had." Beautiful movie its a must see I wish they could get those people together and make another movie like "The War"....It has a very good point to it and its a real one. Please e-mail me and we can talk about it...more info
  • What a great movie of real life.
    This is such a wonderful family story & entertaining in the process. Boy does this bring back memories. ...more info
  • It was one of the best movies I have ever seen!
    Elijah Wood is the best actor for his age that I have ever seen. Being his age,I also find him highly attractive. He has to deal with the stresses of his father's postramatic war syndrom. He does a very good job of actually acting. Kevin Costner is also terrific!...more info
  • Great movie for mature audiences
    Kevin Costner plays a war veteran who has returned to civilian life. He is having a difficult time adjusting after the horrors of war. Such experiences are later recounted in the film. As the title suggests, the war is a key factor in the lives of the people in the film. But the title also serves as a metaphor for the war that becomes part of the lives of the people at home in their everyday struggles.

    Kevin Costner and Elijah Wood's characters are part of a poor family whose interactions with a neighboring family are tenuous and disintegrating. The young daughter sees the institutionalized racism her friends have to deal with on a daily basis. The types of issues that they all deal with are the ones that would leave many of us with gut wrenching dilemmas. Lashing out and confronting some of the situations would mean overstepping bounds and in some cases engaging in violence. The failure to do so would result in defenselessness and in some cases danger.

    The family learns examples from the war veteran who will spend his life wondering whether he made the right decisions in the war and from his refusal to place his personal safety above his sense of duty to those around him because of it.

    This film is well acted and features beautiful cinematography. The HD release is stunning both with respect to clarity and artistry.

    Others have commented that this may not be appropriate for children because of the violence and difficult themes. My children range in age from 11 to 16, and I did not find that to be an issue. However, they were bored to lukewarm at best when watching it. This may be one to watch without the kids before you decide whether it's right for them....more info
  • unkown movie with headline message
    I must say, this movie outdid its self, It really felt good to sit down with my daughter and teenage nieces & newphews and watch something with such a positive message to reinforce the instruction they receive at home. If you didn't know better, you would actually believe, the father/son bond of Costner & Wood, was actually real life father and son. You'll fall in love with all the casts, to be as young as they were they did an extrodinary job, (the bullies made me laugh) "The War" was shown from all angles, even after one comes home, to deal with race, finance, peer pressure, rejection & economy. I especially like the friendship between the two races, given the story was in mississippi in the 70's....more info
  • The War
    I rented this first of all for Kevin Costner, but was surprised after watching why you never heard more about this movie, It was fantastic! Every actor and actress did great jobs, but both Elijah Wood and Kevin Costner stood out. It never really had a certain plot but yet it did in the fact that it focused on war from three sides....The real war Costner went through....The war the children fought to try and fit in.....and the war that everyone of us fight inside ourselves. If you don't walk away from this movie with a twing inside something is missing. I would highly recommend this for the whole family to watch and learn from. And yes I cried at the end....more info
  • Excellent acting performances from all involved.
    The War is an excellent movie dealing with the trials and tribunes of growing up in a small town, with a not so pleasant homelife. Elijah Wood portrays the classic 70's american child with ussual pre-adolescent problems. Growing up in an semi-unstable house, being bullied in school and finally losing a parent. It is a touching story with emotional sub-titles....more info
  • Better than anticipated
    Being an Elijah Wood fan, I ordered this movie, as one I had not yet even heard of. I like Kevin Costner, but have found his later movies to be rather self-absorbing and, well, Kevin Costner playing Kevin Costner - not a lot of versatility there. This movie, although not deep on plot, did impart a senstivity and a feeling of loyalty and compassion. The young actors imparted a vitality and, especially with Elijah Wood, the ability to play (as shown in all of his films) various diversity of methods and the ability to adapt to dialects of differing regions.
    A nice feel-good movie - evoked all of the emotions, but in the end, the message that good outweighs all....more info
  • The War - A Great Vehicle for the Young Elijah Wood
    The War is a species of film released in the early 90's with anti-war, anti-agression themes that require movie-goers to commit to the view that the Vietnam War is a symbol for war's futility. It does this using a metaphor used often before-the loss of innocence; in this case, a child's. What complicates this film's approach is the child is not innocent. Stu Simmons is a struggling kid in poverty's grip fending for himself and family, while his war hero, post-trauma stressed father is trying to find his sanity. Perhaps, the father, Stephen Simmons is the innocent lost and visits it upon his family and, particularly his son.
    The film focuses on the need to put anger aside, forgive those who wrong you, compromise for the benefit of the community and move forward with the struggle for hope with joy in your heart. If it sounds like a sermon-it is. What makes this movie more preachy is Stu Simmons and his sister, Lidia's struggle to keep and defend a fort in a tree (a tree-house). On the surface, such stuff ranks with Lassie or My Friend Flicka, with a slightly more meaty homily and a different set of dirty-faced kids. Added to the message, in this message movie, is Lidia's attempt to bring harmony and understanding between the races. The only thing missing is world peace.

    Despite this overblown capsule of Hallelujahs, The War succeeds admirably for three reasons-the focus on the relationship between Stu and his father; the continual development of Stu as a mirror image of his father, only a more adult version; and a fairly sound script, which only falters when it gets on its soap box and preaches. Any writer can tell you, "show-don't tell." When the script tells us the themes, it sags. When we are shown, it shines. Fortunately, with the exception of the ending, these snippets of hallelujah are peppered throughout and absorbed by the incredible performance of Elijah Wood.

    That Elijah Wood carries this movie is undeniable. The viewer is captured by his skillful development of Stu Simmons and the final blossoming of the young adult. It's much like David Copperfield's journey, only ignore the Dickensian sideshow. The father-son scenes generally work, Kevin Costner giving a competent performance with only one scene with the full depth of his ability. Lexis Randall's performance as Lidia carefully blends her into her family image. You could pick her out as Stu Simmons' sister in a crowd. Unfortunately, as she has the voice overs, she get's the pulpit and the more maudlin lines. LaToya Chisholm's performance as her sarcastic black girlfriend, shines. Her timing, development and intonation are right on the money in all her scenes; and she dominates all her scenes. Mare Winningham as the mother, Lois, inhabits her role as the long suffering but supporting wife, admirably. But it is Elijah Wood's force that allows us to like this movie, admiring his style, intelligence and facial expressions. There's a Shakespearean caliber culmination scene, which rivets the viewer to the screen, much like being drawn into the vortex of the Water Tower, which figures prominently in a long list of visual symbols.

    Of course, when one is preaching, one knows the bottom line. After Elijah Wood delivers his forceful scene, the movie travels along predictable, if not entertaining, lines. The kiddie War is quite adult; and the denouement, the bitter-sweet happy ending, is easily forecast. After all, you can't preach to the congregation with fire and brimstone without letting them leave without a benediction. The need to tie up all the various homilies in Lidia's closing voice over and her little why life is a bowl of cherries essay, could have been left to Laura Engels.

    On the whole, The War is worthwhile as a showcase for Elijah Wood and is worthy of shelf space for his fans. His performance is a must for anyone who had only seen his later work in the Independants or in the massive Lord of the Rings. With an often solid script that has sometimes too much to say, this reviewer would award The War a solid B.
    ...more info
  • Entertaining, but Uneven
    When I decided to watch "The War" when it was on ABC a few months ago, I have to say I had very high hopes for it. With such a talented cast, and a storyline full of dramatic promise, I was expecting something brilliant. I didn't get it. To be fair, "The War" does have several things going for it, including a talented cast turning in socko performances, and a handful of truly magical moments. However, on the whole, the film seems to lack a basic message. Is this movie about the evil of war, the need for people to get along, faith in the American dream, the bond between a family, or tolerence of people different from you? The film sort of jumps from one to the other, not really giving any of them enough time to make much of an impact on the audience. While not at all bad, "The War" will always be the kind of movie where one will think of what could have been....more info
  • "The War" is worth fighting for.
    Being a major Elijah Wood fanatic,I have quite a bit of experience in judging his films."The War"(starring Elijah Wood,Kevin Costner,and Lexi Randall)is,in my opinion,one of,if not the best films he has ever made.Set in post-Vietnam Mississippi,"The War" not only addresses the stresses of the father(Costner)but the stress under which his children(Wood and Randall) have to contend with.The phrase "The War" not only refers to the Vietnam War,but the feud between two lower-class Southern families(or mainly,their children).Even though the big name star in "The War" is Kevin Costner,the show is stolen by the children.Elijah Wood(Lord Of The Rings) and Lexi Randall(Sarah,Plain and Tall)portray adolecsent siblings who are dealing with the anguish their father is feeling and their own anguish within their feud.In my opinion,"The War" is THE family film,and is for anyone who has a minimal amount of taste....more info
  • Love it! Love it!
    I loved this movie SOOOOOOOO much! It was soooo sad when Stu's dad died, though! I am desperately trying to call him Stu because Elijah Wood is my favorite actor EVER!!!! I've taped the movie before I came here(to Amazon)but I cant help but talk bout this movie. Stu is able to cope with problems and manages to still be a kid as well. His soooooooooo adorable in this movie though I dont really know why they call it the War. It wasn't the main idea and it was the aftermath of the war but I still loooooooooooooooooooooooooooooved it!!!!!!!!!!...more info
  • Beautiful Tale of Tragedy and Family Ties
    I cannot get enough of this movie. So many raw emotional scenes, there is not one message in this movie because it reflects the confusion of war. War kills the very thing we fight for, and here in this movie is a man who has been through the war but is determined to keep the family ties alive. Beautiful, beautiful movie....more info
  • Excellent drama the whole family can enjoy
    I originally saw this movie beause I enjoy Costner's acting, and I got a bonus with a well developed storyline and great supporting cast. There is subthemes of poverty and racism, but the strong hand of this movie is relationships and how challenging, complicating, and rewarding they can be. The situations in life children face with friends, and parents face with economics are raised and I believe the movie can provoke educated discussion between parent and children viewers. The movie is appropriately rated as PG-13, there are issues of Death and violence, but the love and the joy that is also experienced makes me highly recommend this movie as an opportunity to share a viewing experience with the whole family....more info
  • They Win this War...
    This is the most beautiful and heartbreaking movie I have
    ever seen. Elijah Wood and Lexi Randall and all the kids
    in the film are amazing, and Kevin Costner gives a perfect
    performance with his physical and emotional transformation
    as Stephen Simmons. He touchingly elicits all of the reality
    of the tragedy in the treatment of Vietnam Veterans, and
    his shellshocked, understated portrayal forces the viewer
    to step back and take notice. One of Kevin's best acting
    pieces, next to A Perfect World, The Untouchables, For the
    Love of the Game, and Field of Dreams. A great movie with
    great performances....more info
  • Overlooked by critics.
    The War starring Kevin Costner and Elijah Wood is a sweet, complicated, and gentle story of a father returning home from war and his sensitive son who is about to come of age. Costner and Wood bring depth and heart to their characters, I was never a big fan of Costner but he absolutely brilliant in this little and ignored film. I highly recommend this tender-hearted film, enjoy!...more info
  • Excellent
    The Movie Was Great! Shipped in excellent condition! I will be ordering again! Thanks Amazon!...more info
  • My favorite Movie
    Elijah Wood deserved an academy award for his performace in this movie. This movie is a must see for all families. It has great lessons to learn. I make everybody watch it if they havn't seen it yet....more info
    This is one of my all-time favorite movies. I have watched it repeated times and I love it more each time I see it. This is a wonderful movie with great performances. Kevin Kostner is wonderful as the "perfect" father and Elijah Wood is great as his son. We come to learn from this movie about life values. We come to know that love is important and that sometimes things are worth fighting for. I recommend this movie to everyone. You will not forget it once you see it!!...more info


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