Sunday, July 27, 2014

9th Company (Collector's Edition) (2005)

9th CompanyAs a Marine that went to Vietnam after the French pulled out, I would like to respond to Thomas A. Maguire "TOM FILM"'s one star rating of the movie 9TH COMPANY. I am going to bet he is young, inexperienced with the world, and a bit opinionated about matters he knows nothing about. He states "One of the worst movies ever made.". This is just ludicrous! This film deserves respect for being earthy, honest and making no apologies for anything depicted on the screen. He states, "The dubbing in English makes this almost a comedy.". If he would step away from his video games for a minute he would know that the lip movement in Russian is way different to English and hasn't the same flow and rhythm. That is why the English speech you hear doesn't match the visual lip movement. The artists that added English dialog are to be congratulated. He goes on to say, "No plot, actors are horrible as is everything about the film.". This is a person who definitely didn't watch this film from start to finish and is intolerant to any form of film-making that doesn't fall into his videogame playing values. If this film had been made in the USA, I have no doubt it would easily win Academy Awards. He states evan further, "The highest grossing movie in Soviet history? You've got to be kidding. Filmed in 2005, released in 2010. Whats up?". Again showing his inexperience... he doesn't realize how much time and effort is required to translate the dialog/soundtrack and get permissions/releases from foreign countries. He makes one last statement that I can some-what agree with, "Don't waste the dollar at redbox!". I agree... get this movie on Blue-ray, (or at least DVD) you won't be disappointed. As a last resort use RedBox and enjoy one hard hitting, in your face, earthy imported movie that brings out the horrors of war in a truthful manor. (I have survived just such an encounter!) I would give this movie 10 stars out of 10 if I could. Don't listen to the Thomas A. Maguire's and "Megabee's one star ratings... they haven't a clue what their talking about!

Thank you,

Alex Taylor

I felt that the 9th Company was a very good film and it portrays a none western view of the Soviet Afghan War. The film follows the service of several Soviet VDV(Airborne)troopers from their enlistment up to the end of the films final battle.The film covers events in 1987-88 which was during the final stages of the Soviet Afghan War. The first half of the movie focus on the at times very brutal training that the VDV troopers go through the instructor Warrant Officer Dygalo often resorts to brutal punishment of the men for making mistakes and the actor portraying Dygalo has an outstanding scene where he goes into a rage at the men when he learns that he will not be allowed to return to Afghanistan.Another very interesting scene is at the end of the basic training a VDV commander asks the men if any of them wish not to serve in Afghanistan that they should step forward and they will be assigned elsewhere this scene is notable as many westerners may not know that serving in Afghanistan was voluntary and every Soviet solider asked to serve there.

There are several good scenes when the new troopers arrive in Afghanistan and met the much more experienced men in the unit the 9th company which they have been assigned to.The rest of the movie develops well and you see how the young fresh naive men come to see the chaos of warfare.The battle scenes are very confusing and violent and you rarely see much of the enemy for very long which does a great job keeping you on the edge of your set and feeling out of control of what is happening.

The last 20 or so minutes of the film is the climatic final battle which occurs in early January 1988 and lasts almost three days.The film does take some creative license in this part and portrays the unit as having been forgotten about and not receiving any fire support until the last day.In reality the real 9th Company was not forgotten and had full fire support during the battle.Though the battle and situation shown in the film is a bit different than fact I feel that the director did this to portray the general feelings of the men who severed in the war that they where forgotten and whats worse the nation and ideas that these men where fighting for the Soviet Union no longer existed just a few short years after the Soviets left Afghanistan. Overall a very good film and beyond a doubt far better than any western film about the Soviet Afghan War such as Charlie Wilson's War which is highly idealized far more so than the 9th Company is.

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I'm reaaly happy that I bought this movie on Amazon. I saw many russian movies and I think this movie is the best russian movie in the last five years. Fedor Bondarchyk is the great son of his father who created the best movie of the 20th century "War and Peace".

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I have seen this movie on YouTube and found it very well filmed, after viewing several parts of the movie I decided to make the purchase of this movie. I am happy to add this film into my collection.

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It seems like yesterday when Russia invaded Afghanistan, with the so-called mission of "fulfilling our international duty, by assisting the brotherly people of Afghanistan in repulsing imperialist aggression." Well, we already know that this enterprise was a failure, and "9th Company" is a film that we really need in current times, when history seems to be forgotten very, very fast and repeated in an incredibly stupid manner. It is brutal and honest, a truly penetrating and unforgettable film.

The movie begins in 1988, when a group of Siberians which volunteered to join the army and fight in Afghanistan are about to depart for boot camp. We meet the young men whose life we will follow throughout the film. From Siberia they are transported to Ferghana, Uzbekistan, where they will spend three months of training before going to the front. The men in charge of breaking them in is drill sergeant Dygalo (Mikhail Porechenkov, in a superb performance) and Captain Bystov (Aleksey Kravchenko, in another amazing performance), who informs them that "the most important thing to remember is that Islam is not just another religion. It is another world, with its own laws, a different view of life and death. A true Muslim is not afraid to die in battle killing an infidel is a heroic deed, a stairway to heaven." And off they go to Baghram, Afghanistan, where they are divided into two companies: 4th and 9th. As the name of the picture implies, we follow the 9th Company until the very end, and gradually witness their evolution in the war. This was one of the last companies to leave Afghanistan during the Russian final withdrawal on February 9, 1989, after almost ten years of engagement.

Under the direction of Fyodor Bondarchuk, this film has a lot in common with Stanley Kubrick's "Full Metal Jacket (1987), in which its two hours are basically divided into two parts. The first hour is about the training and the second one is about the actual war. However, "9th Company" feels more real and visceral with some very funny moments, too --, and we get a clear picture of why the Russians could not defeat the Mujahideen resistance. Not in vain, Captain Bystov also told his men: "In the entire history, no one ever managed to conquer Afghanistan. No one... Never..." Funny enough, the line that keeps popping up all along the movie is, "Your motherland won't forget this." This film was based on real events which took place on January 8, 1989, on Height 3234, in the Khost Province, Afghanistan. Perhaps our men in Washington could leave the comfort in their lives and take a look at this movie. The Blu-Ray edition of the movie includes trailers and English language and subtitles. (Finland, Russia, Ukraine; 2005; color; 140 min plus additional materials).

Reviewed exclusively by Eric Gonzalez for on September 9, 2010.

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