Philippine War Week II: The Last American Soldier (1988)

Directed and written by the Italian director Ignazio Dolce, who went from being an actor to directing six films of his own (the others are L’ammazzatinaLast PlatoonLeathernecksLast Flight to Hell and La Spina del Papavero), this movie finds its hero Sgt. Roger “Commander” Craig — yes, the guy’s name is is a rank higher than his actual rank — putting together his own army that stays around at the end of Vietnam and makes things so rough that the Russians need to come and help.

Now, Commando wants to bring his pregnant wife back to the United States and makes a deal with his old commanding officer to steal some important Russian electronics for two passports and a safe trip home. This leads to a Russian soldier named Vlassov blowing our hero’s adopted village up real good — many bamboo huts gave their all for this movie — and killing his wife’s entire family before taking her captive.

There are two insane things in this movie: special pills that simulate death and a water torture scene with a plastic bag that looks way too uncomfortable not to be fake. That’s the struggle that Americans in Vietnam movies set in the Philippines are willing to take for you. They will look death right in the face.

Bonus: A Simon Boswell score!

You can watch this on YouTube.

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