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->'''Ron Kovic''': They burned the flag and they demonstrated against us; it's on the cover of the paper today. They have no respect. They have no idea what's going on over there, Mom - the men that are sacrificing their lives. People are dying every day over there, and nobody back here even seems to care. It's a bunch of goddamn shit if you ask me!
->'''Mrs. Kovic''': Ronnie, don't take the Lord's name in vain - not in front of the children. I agree with everything you say!
->'''Ron Kovic''': I served my country - and they just want to take from it - just take, take! Love it or leave it, that's what I think.

The autobiography of Vietnam War Vet. Ron Kovic, BornOnTheFourthOfJuly was published in 1976. In 1989, the film version directed by Creator/OliverStone and starring TomCruise as Kovic was released. Stone won his second Oscar as director, his third overall, and Cruise got his first Oscar nomination. This is also his second film about UsefulNotes/TheVietnamWar, following ''{{Film/Platoon}}'' and followed by ''Film/HeavenAndEarth''. These three films are often said to form a "trilogy", although they merely share subject matter and do not take place in a shared continuity.

Ron Kovic, a young man from Long Island, goes off to fight in Vietnam. During his second tour of duty, Kovic accidentally kills a fellow soldier, Private Wilson, which deeply scars him emotionally. During a firefight, Kovic is permanently paralyzed from the waist down. Once he is discharged, Kovic comes home a changed man. He feels that his country hasn't done much of anything to help his fellow Vietnam veterans. Subsequently, he joins the anti-war movement. And goes to Mexico.

NeedsWikiMagicLove.

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!!This work features examples of:

* AuthorTract: Probably Oliver Stone's most preachy film.
* CaliforniaDoubling: Like ''Film/ApocalypseNow'' and ''Film/{{Platoon}}'', scenes in Vietnam were actually shot in the Philippines due to the political climate.
* ClusterFBomb
* EveryHelicopterIsAHuey
* AManIsNotAVirgin: Subverted; Kovic tries to have sex after his tours of duty, but even with a prostitute, he doesn't enjoy the experience.
* ReturningWarVet: Ron Kovic.
* SemperFi: Averted. Ron believes the Marines to be this when he enlists. Beginning with the Private Wilson incident, and the X/O refusing to help him cope with it, he realizes it's anything but.
* SignificantBirthDate: Ron Kovic was born on July 4th, 1946; hence, the title of the book and film.
* StrawmanPolitical: Thankfully averted, for both ends of the spectrum.
* TheMerch: Deconstructed, as the film ended up inspiring unofficially merchandise in the form of "Ron Kovic" Halloween costumes and an unofficial (in terms of not getting the license for the actor's appearance) adult collectible 1/6th scale action figure of Tom Berenger from the film, as Berenger has a single scene in the film where he gives a recruitment speech for the Marines in dress blues at the start of the film.
* UsefulNotes/TheVietnamWar
* WarIsHell: Very much so.

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