31 May 2015 | joncheskin
Something is Wrong With This Picture
Love and Honor tells the story of a soldier in Vietnam, Dalton, who takes extreme measures when he receives a Dear John from his girl back home; he jumps his RandR and flies back to Michigan to try to win her back. His buddy Mickey, perhaps only looking for a good adventure, perhaps genuinely trying to help his friend, flies back with him, and strangely finds true love himself when he meets a friend of the girl in the house they are living in. A problem--both girls are Vietnam protesters, and the fact that Dalton and Mickey are soldiers provides an awkward backdrop to their developing romances.
Love and Honor is a movie that is non-functional on a number of interesting levels, and is therefore strangely entertaining. This is a movie that is probably best taken as a sort of chick flick (romance burgeoning in an impossible situation) and on that level, it is mildly effective. In such movies, the drama does not have to be top quality--we get caught up in the silly story and suspend our disbelief to enjoy the tackiness of the whole thing.
The problem, however, is that Love and Honor occasionally veers off of this course and tries to be more serious. We get, for example, modest attempts at a realistic period piece; problem is that the movie does not seems realistic at all--scenes in Hong Kong were filmed in an airport built in the 1990s, and much of the movie seems like it has no sense of the period.
The movie occasionally tries to veer into the realm of serious drama related to the anxieties of war time, ala Born on the Forth of July. Problem is that our cast has the look of 21st century fashion models, kind of like watching a modern sitcom. It is not believable, and attempts at gritty realism seem to simply fall flat.
As a result, the movie seems very much like a 21st century teenage fantasy about what the Vietnam period was like. If you like watching this kind of stuff on TV, well then you are fine sitting in front of this movie. If, however, you are looking for The Deer Hunter, or Born on the Fourth of July, then you are bound to chuckle at how silly the movie looks or acts.