Synopsis by Lucia Bozzola
Hal Ashby's 1978 melodrama examines the impact of the Vietnam War on the "war at home" among the men who fought it and the women in their lives. Left alone in Los Angeles when her gung-ho Marine husband Bob (Bruce Dern) heads to Vietnam in 1968, proper wife Sally Hyde (Jane Fonda) decides to volunteer at the V.A. hospital where her new friend Vi (Penelope Milford) works. There she meets Luke Martin (Jon Voight), a former high-school classmate and Marine who has returned from 'Nam a bitter paraplegic. As their relationship grows, Sally sees the effect of the war on the soldiers after they come back, inspiring her to rethink her priorities; Luke's spirits begin to lift, and a hospital tragedy helps focus his anger toward meaningful protest. After a Hong Kong visit with her increasingly withdrawn husband, Sally finds a love and companionship with Luke that she had never known with her husband. Once Bob comes home with his own injury, however, the three must find a way to deal with a changing world and with a system that betrayed the men fighting for it.
anti-war, paraplegic, anger, depression, doctor/nurse, homecoming, love-triangle, self-discovery, VA-Hospital, veteran [military], Vietnam, volunteer, wheelchair
High Artistic Quality, High Historical Importance