Born On the Fourth of July

Essay by blueguitarCollege, UndergraduateA+, March 2003

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"My backyard was turned into a battlefield, filled with little boys playing war, dreaming that someday they'd become men." The plot and summary of the film tells the story of Ron's life from boyhood to becoming a man. It begins with the background of Ron's small town All-American life. He respects and loves his country. He joined the Marines with nothing but love for his country only to find himself abused and finally neglected by society and the people that put him over in Vietnam, the government. During the time of the war (1960s and 1970s), the United States was going through a time of grief, confusion, loss of family and friends, and neglect from the government. This put many in a position to be anti-war and anti-Vietnam veterans. One of these veterans was Ron Kovic. Kovic, shot in action, became paralyzed from the waist down. He was confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life.

He endured poor conditions in the hospitals that were for the soldiers wounded at war. He received no respect from his fellow U.S. citizens. When Kovic first came back, he did not understand all the anti-war feelings, he was convinced that he could change both the attitude of society and the government. He spends months drinking with other veterans before he "sees the light" on the war and the government's effect on it. He begins speaking at anti-war movements and working for handicapped veterans. The movie ends with Ron giving an inspiring speech at a political convention. Born on the Fourth of July is a story about an American boy who goes to war with high hopes and lofty ideas and comes back a changed person with a whole new view on life and the government he lives under.

This movie...