- Adaptation Displacement: As usual, many people have not heard of the book.
- Award Snub: The film received 7 Academy Award nominations, and received absolutely no wins.
- Also, none of those nominations were for the actors, which can seem slightly egregious when one sees the performances of Nick Nolte and Elias Koteas.
- The Hollywood Foreign Press Association note gave it no nominations, and neither did the BAFTAs.
- Awesome Music: The entire soundtrack by Hans Zimmer is a symphonic piece, probably his best work to date (and yes, that is saying something). Many people who haven't seen the film have heard the soundtrack in trailers for other, lesser war movies. Some people were even angry at Pearl Harbor when the beautiful trailer music taken from this film got them into theatres to see that film.
- Heartwarming Moments: The film's opening in the Melanesian village; the death of Pvt. Coombs (a very young Matt Doran) as his fellow soldiers try to comfort him.
Staros: I have lived with these men for two and a half years. I will not order them all to their deaths.
- Staros refusing to send more of his men up the hill.
- Jerkass Woobie: Even Col. Tall inspires some sympathy with his Motive Rant.
- Strawman Has a Point: Lt. Colonel Tall is presented as exactly the kind of commander no one would want to work for, a Jerkass who cares more about glory than about his soldiers' lives. But he may be right about a lot of things, too; men die in war, and Staros may be too compassionate to lead them into it. And when he has a full understanding of the tactical situation he comes up with plans that ultimately work.