The Gist: During the Vietnam war, in order to flee the violence and danger, a young woman is forced to leave behind the peaceful life of her village in the countryside for Saigon . Once there, however, things don't get any easier. She has to hustle and even prostitute herself in order to make a living. One day, she meets a U.S. Marine, they fall in love, and eventually marry. When he returns to the homeland, she reluctantly follows, but the new cultural shock won't be easy to absorb.
Heaven and Earth completes Oliver Stone's Vietnam trilogy and, while it may not have been as successful as its predecessors, it certainly deals with the realities of war and survival, but this time more from the point of view of the Vietnamese.
Hiep Thi Le carries the whole movie on her shoulders, and graces us with an energetic, heartfelt performance, playing the victimized and abused woman who keeps on fighting for a better life.
Her future husband is played by Tommy Lee Jones in what is probably the only role where he doesn't have the cantankerous, peevish expression we all associate with him.
The Bottom Line: Heaven and Earth is a movie about war, but more about what war means to the innocent people caught in the gunfire then about the soldiers fighting in it. It's well made and certainly worthy of your time.