A comprehensive historic account of the prolegomena to the Vietnam war with heavy input from relevant personalities of the era. Colonialism transmutes through history adopting different shapes and parallelisms can be drawn with more recent conflicts. Some might miss here a deeper exploration of the figure of Ho Chi Mihn, his works and political vision, crucial to understand the struggle from the side of the victims.
It's a very illuminating documentary. The work with documental materials like pictures, words, music and sound is exemplary: Emile de Antonio luckily doesn't use mood music to interpret words or pictures; instead he comments the events by confronting different levels of auditive and visual perception.
Fascinating and informative document concerning the war in Vietnam made at the time of the ever increasing American aggression and presence there. With 'no end in sight' at the time the film is both history lesson and cautionary tale that well hypothesis about the 'arrogance of power' and the futility in mounting modern warfare against a determined and dug-in population. A lesson it seems that has not been learnt.