Vietnamese refugees stay in a refugee camp near Camp Pendleton, California until they can find sponsors and be assimilated into American culture. — Genre: Feature Film-Drama — Rating: PG13 — Release Date: 7-JUN-2005 — Media Ty... more »pe: DVD« less
Michel D. (michelann) from WALNUT GROVE, MO Reviewed on 11/9/2015...
Excellent story that has had very little exposure and that regards what happened after Saigon fell. We rushed home and resumed lives but the innocent people who flocked to the US to begin new lives where shuffled pillar to post before being allowed to settle in and become "Americans". Actors were all top rate and story very well written!
Jim W. (Bonez) from COVINGTON, WA Reviewed on 1/6/2011...
An excellent movie if you want to know what happened with the Vietnamese refugees once they reacehed the United States.
Barbara A. from SUN CITY, CA Reviewed on 8/26/2008...
If you enjoy Vietnam films, this one is one but of a different kind. This is post 1975 when the refugees arrive at Camp Pendleton, California. Patrick Swayze shows his love and understanding for the refugees. Forest Whitaker becomes a child again as he decides he cannot help everyone so he focuses on one lost boy - and brings out the child in himself as well as the laughter in the child. These two actors show the true meaning of "how to get into the character".
Tina O. (Swan) from LEWISTON, ID Reviewed on 4/7/2008...
I thought it was a very good story. The only thing that I was disappointed about, was that the major stars in the movie were second characters. The Vietamese people were the main characters. There are a lot of subtitles. Took a lot of concentration for me with the subtitles, because of distraction in the house during the movie.
2 THUMBS UP....ABSOLUTE MUST-SEE!!!!
Solange | Denver, CO USA | 05/31/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As the first story ever told on big screen of the antecedent Vietnamese refugees to arrive in the U.S right before the official fall of Saigon, director and script writer, Timothy Linh Bui, depicts the utmost astonishing insights from these refugees' perspective of the aftermath of the Vietnam war: innumerable lives lost, both American and Vietnamese, and families' grievances; the refugees' uncertainty and fear of separation from each other in foreign land, of what the dim future could hold; the struggle with humility as even former doctors and lawyers need to adjust and start all over with lowly manual labor jobs; with hope and determination and family as the only remaining possessions they had to rebuild everything in this new, foreign land.....A movie with different insights that almost any generation or age group can relate to."
Brilliant and Moving
A-Train | Denver, CO United States | 04/04/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I passed up this movie several times at the video store. Something about the generic title and Patrick Swayze's big mug gracing the cover. I had no idea what I was missing. "Green Dragon" brings to light a piece of lost history--the internment camps of Vietnamese refugees following the Vietnam war. Through the film we meet a variety of characters and their developing relationships with one another. 3 things really make this picture work: the wonderful perfomances, the stunning photography, and the direction from the Bui brothers. Tony and Timothy Bui previously made another wonderful picture called "Three Seasons." "Green Dragon" is as good, if not better. They love these characters, and that's what makes the movie so fulfilling. Extra features on the DVD include an audio commentary, Documentary, 3 trailers (Crouching Tiger, Beijing Bicycle, and Vertical Ray of the Sun), and an essay on the cinematography. If not to own, "Green Dragon" is an absolute must-see for great drama."
Lyrical, touching, tragic and funny - A must-see
T. Lockwood | San Jose, CA USA | 07/06/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is one of the most meaningful films I've seen in a while, probably because my partner is Vietnamese and this is a slice of his life. What's most interesting, though, is that I liked it a lot more than he did. What he found cloying and sappy, I found touching and sincere. He admits that this is a pretty accurate reflection of "how it was," though.This is the same director that filmed "Three Seasons," and the difference between the two is in the star of the show. In "Three Seasons" the star is the breath-taking Vietnamese landscape - so beautiful! In "Green Dragon" the star(s) are the actors. Patrick Swayze is sort of blah, clearly trying to branch into something un-hollywood. You won't recognize him. Much more interesting was Forest Whitaker, whom I've never liked, (never read as sincere). His part was believable and endearing. Breathtaking was Trung Hieu Nguyen as Minh. He steals the show. Every thought he has appears on his face. You should see this film for him alone.Take Kleenex."
I applaud the authenticity of this Vietnamese refugee story
Linda Linguvic | New York City | 01/22/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This 2001 film is set in 1975, at Camp Pendleton in California. This is where Vietnamese refugees were processed after fleeing the aftermath of the American pullout in Vietnam. The place is crowded, emotions are high, and there are multiple individual stories. Written and directed by the Bui brothers, who came to America as babies in the 1970s and there's an authenticity to the film that goes deeper than the surface tales. 1975 seems a long time gone now, but this film brings it all to life as the refuges live in this shadow world between Vietnam and America for several weeks or months. As background, we hear frequent news broadcasts about the situation in Vietnam and the fall of Saigon. It gave me the shivers.
The basic storyline casts Don Duong as an uncle who has escaped with his small niece and nephew. The children believe that their mother will join them soon but it is likely she has not escaped. Trung Hieu Nguyan is cast as the small boy with big wide eyes who discovers Mighty Mouse comic books. He is befriended by Forest Whitaker, cast as a volunteer cook at the camp and who teaches the youngster some valuable lessons in life. Patrick Swayze is the camp commander whose job seems impossible at times. To some, he represents the ugly Americans who caused all the trouble in the first place.
Most of the stories play like a soap opera and the entire film moved much too slowly for my taste. However, it really didn't matter that this film will never win any academy awards. I applaud it for bringing a long-gone time and a place to life. And for raising my own consciousness about the Vietnamese people who made the long journey to America. This is a sad movie and I found myself depressed afterwards. But I know I'll never forget it."
*your title here*
Stephen Fink | Bourbon, Indiana United States | 10/05/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Green Dragon, the first movie from Forest Whitaker's new production company, is one of the best wartime movies of the last couple of years. Perhaps a lot of that is due to the fact it stays far away from the war it takes places during (Vietnam). Instead, it takes you to the Camp Pendleton refugee camp set up after the United States pulled out of the war. It deals with the difficulty on both the side of the refugees and the Sergeant responsible for them (played by Patrick Swayze). The refugees want to get on with their lives, but they aren't quite sure how to do that. They know returning to their country would be a pointless deathtrap, but they are afraid of what life in America will be like for them. Introduces Trung Hieu Nguyen as the little boy Minh who develops a friendship with Forest Whitaker's doomed cook/artist Addie. If you are interested in the more emotional side of the effects of war and not just the explosions, put it on your "to rent" list. Final Grade: A-"