1969 1988


Action / Drama / War

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 55%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 44%
IMDb Rating 5.8


Two friends, Ralph and Scott live in a small minded town at the onset of wide public dissatisfaction with the Vietnam war. While Scott's brother enlists, he and Ralph are outspoken in their opposition to the war. Scott's attitude alienates him from his father and he and Ralph leave town to enjoy their 'freedom'. Various events lead them back to town where they learn of the death of the brother. This event proves to be the catalyst needed to bridge the gap between father and son and enlightens them both to the true cost of war.

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2015-10-31 20:48:16


Robert Downey Jr. as Ralph Carr
Winona Ryder as Beth
Bruce Dern as Cliff
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
755.67 MB
24 fps
1h 35m
P/S 2 / 1
1.44 GB
24 fps
1h 35m
P/S 1 / 1

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by grantss 7 / 10

Good story, with good performances

Small town America, 1960s. Two friends, Ralph and Scott, are opposed to the Vietnam War and are determined to not fight there. This disappoints Scott's father, Cliff, and alienates Scott from him. Ralph and Scott leave the town but return when Scott's brother is declared MIA in Vietnam. This gives Cliff and Scott a chance to patch up their differences.

Entertaining. Not very profound: covers ground that has been covered before, and is a tad idealistic. Still, good story, with good performances.

Features Robert Downey Jr and Kiefer Sutherland in their early careers and Winona Ryder in only her 4th movie (previous was Beetlejuice, next was Heathers...). Great supporting cast: Bruce Dern, Joanna Cassidy, Mariette Hartley.

Excellent soundtrack.

Reviewed by mark.waltz 9 / 10

They were the new generation that the old generation refused to understand.

War in Vietnam is raging, and two old friends from high school are determined to avoid the violence going on overseas. Robert Downey Jr. and Kruger Sutherland give sincere performances in this period drama that was not only the age of Aquarius, but the age of liberation. Women's, blacks, gays. All fighting for their piece of the pie that 200 years of American civil liberties had not really given them. If the rock and roll era of the late 1950's set up the possibility for drastic change, it was the fed-up youth of this era that put real change in motion whether traditional American society wanted it or not.

Now nearly 50 years later, the participants of all of the events which took place are grandparents, sharing their stories as society morphs into new ideals. Of course, you couldn't have a movie about this era without the music which is touching my utilized to dramatize everything going on. Generation gaps, difference in political leanings and all sorts of rebellion are seen, through a political rally that ends in violence, a high school graduation speech touching on fears for the future (delivered by Winona Ryder as Downey's younger sister), an LSD overdose and most poignantly, the fears and resentments between Sutherland and his older brother who goes off to Vietnam.

The adults seem real here, not cartoon characters or stereotypical squares just outraged by their children's behavior. It's obvious that parents had more fears than their children did, most likely having seen the horrors of the second World War which was supposed to be the last one. Bruce Dern tries to be understanding, but his character, obviously raised to be 100% patriotic, sees it all falling apart all around him. Mariette Hartley, as his wife, runs along side her soldier son's bus, screaming to him in a very tearful moment, "Don't die!" over and over again. Joanna Cassidy is Downey's mom, having a panic attack when he goes into shock following an LSD overdose.

Ernest Thompson, the author and director of "On Golden Pond", tells a warm and often funny story here, poignant and real. The brief presence of a gay character who picks both Downey and Sutherland up isn't gratuitous or homophobic, but simply a reflection of the times that showed the anger and relief that went beyond the era of the flower power. With a Maryland setting rather than big city, this gives its perspective that this hit an entire country, not just urban America.

Having wanted to see this for years and somehow missed it, I was not disappointed. It is obvious as to why Downey, Sutherland and Ryder went onto great success, even having their share of self-discovery. The generation gap my have been a serious issue, but it has probably lead to a deeper understanding between the estranged generations when the next one grew up and followed even more into rebellion than this one. This is what makes thus movie so timeless because it reflects changes in history that affect everything, including the future.

Reviewed by Prismark10 3 / 10

Running to the hippie beat

The title, 1969 gives off such a dynamic vibe but the end result is disappointing. Made in 1988 when films depicting the Vietnam war were all the rage this is sub par if you compare this with Born on the Fourth of July that would be released a year later.

Kiefer Sutherland plays Scott. Robert Downey Jr plays his best buddy Ralph. Both have left college and are making their way back home, a small Maryland town. Scott is more introverted, softly spoken and clever. Ralph is more boisterous, loud, does crazy thing and into drugs. As it was almost common at the time there is a scene of Downey Jr running around with just his underpants on.

Once they get home Scott realises that his older brother is on his way to Vietnam. You get the feeling he will not be coming back. Their father (Bruce Dern) a World War 2 veteran seems supportive of his son going to Vietnam and ashamed of Scott's opposition to the war.

Scott and Ralph decide to go on the road rather then await to get drafted. This means exploring the hippie movement of the town with sex, drugs and rock n roll.

Once they get back home Scott learns that his brother his MIA. There is tension is his parent's marriage. Ralph ends up in jail when he sneaks into the draft board office and tries to destroy his file in order to avoid the draft. Scott falls for Ralph's sister Beth (Winona Ryder) which also causes resentment with Ralph.

The film is rather aimless, lost too much in nostalgia as depicted by the film's soundtrack. The film itself is not as amusing or interesting and neither are the characters. Downey's Ralph reminded me of a lot of other characters he played at the time.

If you want to watch a bittersweet film about teenagers in the Vietnam war era you will get more mileage out from a classic like Big Wednesday.

The best performances are from Bruce Dern and Mariette Hartley who plays Scott's parents. Dern tones it down a bit as the patrician father rather all at sea during changing times.

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