Published on May 5th, 2008 | by Chris


Charlie Wilson’s War (2007)

Reviewed by:
On May 5, 2008
Last modified:February 18, 2014


So, yes, underneath the T&A (yeah there's a lot of that, never hurts, right?) and one-liners there is the message.

Charlie Wilson’s War (2007)You know anytime you put Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts together, you're going to get something which is at least a fun, well-acted ride. Charlie Wilson's War is no exception.

It's the "true" story of one Texas Congressman, Charlie Wilson (Tom Hanks), who throughout the 1980's managed to get oodles of money to fund weapons for the Afghan Mujahadeen to fight the invading Red Menace(tm). While there may not really be that many typical "war movie" elements to speak of here, the premise is just as relevant.

How much of the story is true? I can't say, but none of it would surprise me any. Actually I think this film is more of a tongue-in-cheek celebration of 80's decadence with a healthy dose of "told you so" political commentary thrown in for good measure.

Of course nothing in Washington is driven except through money, and that's where Texas millionaire Joanne Herring (Julia Roberts) comes in, she basically gets the ball rolling with her connections to Pakistan's president.

But the real star of the film has to be CIA agent Gust Avacado..er I mean Avrakotos (Philip Seymour Hoffman) his cynicism and bitter, deadpan, wise-cracking throughout the film is absolutely hilarious. Mostly because its in the "you know its true" vein of joke.

It's the on-screen chemistry between these three which make the film watchable. Had it been anyone else I doubt it would have been nearly as interesting or funny.

Of course the film has to end with the Soviets leaving Afghanistan, Wilson's efforts to rebuild the country falling to pieces, and Avrakatos' stern (and all too true) warning about what we've created.

So, yes, underneath the T&A (yeah there's a lot of that, never hurts, right?) and one-liners there is the message. That the US *still* doesn't know what the ____ it's doing by getting involved in the affairs of these nations. That we haven't learned our lessons and its still coming back to haunt us. That our arrogance as a world power is actually hurting us. There are moments inbetween the humor where you will sort of hang your head for laughing, because you *will* feel ashamed.

But forget all of that and watch Charlie Wilson's War just because its damn funny, most of the time.

Charlie Wilson's War (Widescreen Edition) Charlie Wilson's War (Widescreen Edition)
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Political movies about backroom negotiations need not be dry or heavy-handed, as Charlie Wilson's War delightfully proves. Based on the true story of playboy congressman Wilson's efforts to fund Afghanistan's defense against the Soviet invasion of the 1980s, the film is borne along on breezy attitude and a peppery script by West Wing scribe Aaron Sorkin...

DVD Information

Binding: DVD
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Audience Rating: R (Restricted)
Brand: Universal Studios
Manufacturer: Universal Studios Home Entertainment
Original Release Date:
  • Tom Hanks
  • Julia Roberts
  • Philip Seymour Hoffman
  • Amy Adams
  • Ned Beatty


  • Factory sealed DVD


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Charlie Wilson’s War (2007) Chris

Summary: So, yes, underneath the T&A (yeah there's a lot of that, never hurts, right?) and one-liners there is the message.


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About the Author

I’ve been watching war movies for probably 25 years now. Since December 2006 I’ve been sharing my habit and passion for these movies here on this site.

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