Let me preface this review by saying I had a lot of mixed feelings before watching this movie. I had heard good and bad things but since I don't really listen to a lot of the chatter, it didn't adversly influence me one way or the other. With regards to the movie, I think I have to applaud Sam Mendes into turning a documentary style book into a great movie. It's not a classic by any means. Certainly no Saving Private Ryan or Platoon or Apocalypse Now but certainly every bit as engrossing as a Thin Red Line and other movies that devote themselves to development not only of the character but the scenario around them. It is akin to Platoon in its characters but the environment is very different. And what a lovely environment it is. The cinematography really has to be commended and I am hopeful this movie gets recognition someplace for its fabulous landscapes. The music also is great. I just got back from the store after having bought the OST. A great CD, recommended to all. The story itself is straight-forward, following the life of Swofford as he goes through the ranks and into battle during desert storm. I am not going to discuss this part simply because I feel everyone should develop their own likes and dislikes based on THEIR viewing The acting is excellent and there are a lot of real-life situations that the guys experience. Love/hate/relationships and the like. The pacing is also very good. Some may not like it because it is a little slow but heck, even Shawshank was a snails crawl but a FABULOUS movie. Overall I give this movie a 4/5 OSNN star rating. Not quite a date flick so keep that in mind.