Film & TV

Cineast Movie Previews: ‘The Longest Week,’ ‘Last Days in Vietnam’

Cineast offers previews of The Longest Week and Last Days in Vietnam, and you can watch the trailers too.

The Longest Week

Olivia Wilde, Jason Bateman and Billy Crudup make up the principals in a love triangle in The Longest Week. This comedy follows Conrad Valmont (Bateman), the heir to the Valmont Hotel fortune, over a tumultuous week in which he is unceremoniously cut off by his family (they had been supporting him with a weekly allowance, none of which he saved up, apparently) and asks to move in with his buddy Dylan (Crudup)—while trying to keep his recent impoverishment secret. An entitled child of privilege, Conrad immediately goes to work on Dylan’s girlfriend Beatrice (Wilde), who is quite receptive to his advances. Dylan meanwhile tries to interest Conrad in plain-Jane Jocelyn (Jenny Slate), whose reaction to what she sees is disgust and horror over the immaturity and immorality of the upper classes.

Last Days in Vietnam

Last Days in Vietnam, despite the fact that it documents events that happened almost 50 years ago, might turn out to be a timely film—given the way that events are transpiring in Iraq. Like Iraq, South Vietnam was a country in name only, a fiction that the U.S. government clung to so it could claim a shred of victory in southeast Asia, pretend it had defeated the communists, and justify the loss of tens of thousands of U.S. soldiers (not to mention untold millions of Vietnamese civilians). Like Iraq, South Vietnam began to collapse as soon as the U.S. pulled out its forces. And just as is now happening in Iraq, Vietnamese who had allied themselves with the U.S. or who had been depending on the U.S. for protection were suddenly in great danger as the North took control and moved to “cleanse” the country of collaborators. The fall of Saigon, like the recent fall of Mosul, was, in retrospect, inevitable—nobody would argue that the U.S. had anything to gain by continuing to fight for the survival of South Vietnam. But most would say that the U.S. should have done more to protect the innocent people who had been our allies there. Will we say the same about Iraq in 50 years?

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