Don’t Cry, It’s Only Thunder (1982)

Don’t Cry, It’s Only Thunder (1982)

“This is turning into a goddamn nightmare!”

With support from a female doctor (Susan Saint James), a young medic (Dennis Christopher) during the Vietnam War becomes becomes involved with a home for Vietnamese orphans.

Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:

  • Character Arc
  • Do-Gooders
  • Orphans
  • Vietnam War

Response to Peary’s Review:
As Peary notes, this film about “an undisciplined young medic stationed in Saigon” who “learns responsibility when he finds himself helping two Vietnamese nuns run a non-sanctioned, off-base home for war orphans” is “a bit sticky” at times, but “its treatment of the war and its effect on children is unsentimental”, and it possesses an admirable theme: “Real heroes are those who make commitments to help people whose problems make their own seem insignificant.” While Christopher’s character arc is somewhat predictable, this remains a worthy and “sensitive look at a different side of the Vietnam War.”

Redeeming Qualities:

  • A refreshing glimpse of Americans and Vietnamese interacting humanely during the war

Must See?
No, though it’s worth checking out if you can find a copy.


One thought on “Don’t Cry, It’s Only Thunder (1982)

  1. First viewing. Not must-see, though I’ll agree that it’s a “sensitive look at a different side of the Vietnam War.” As such, it has a strong sense of atmosphere for the most part, though it’s also occasionally uneven in execution (suggesting a low-budget).

    As for the acting… though a stronger actor would have been better in the lead, Christopher generally has a feeling of conviction. Saint James balances things with her sympathetic performance.

    It took me quite a long time to come across this film; it appears to be somewhat lost / forgotten.

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