Examining the Myths of the Vietnam War

Post Celluloid Stress Disorder (PCSD)

Day One -- Monday, July 26, 2004 Second Session 1100-1245 (Click to see video) (Click here to see transcript) [Suggestion: you might want to listen to the Video while reading the transcript. To do this, open the Video which will take you toWindows Media Player and then minimize it and open the transcript.]

2. Post Celluloid Stress Disorder (PCSD): Media and Hollywood myth-making. Why and how has the veteran and the war been portrayed in popular culture and to what extent does this distort the historical record.

Speaker: Michael Lee Lanning

Speaker’s biographical information: MICHAEL LEE LANNING retired from the U.S. Army as a lieutenant colonel after more than twenty years of service. In Vietnam he served as an infantry platoon leader, a reconnaissance platoon leader, and a rifle company commander. He later served as public affairs officer for General H. Norman Schwarzkopf. He is the author of Vietnam at the Movies, a survey of more than 380 films with Vietnam themes. His other books include Inside the VC and the NVA: The Real Story of North Vietnam's Armed Forces (with Dan Cragg), The Battles of Peace, Inside Force Recon: Recon Marines in Vietnam (with Ray W. Stubbe), Inside the LRRPs: Rangers in Vietnam, Vietnam 1969-1970: A Company Commander's Journal, and The Only War We Had: A Platoon Leader's Journal of Vietnam. He resides in Phoenix, Arizona, and Eastsound, Washington.

Website : 

Discussion Forum: Click here to discuss this Session

Articles of Interest:

The Vet Strikes Back: One Vet's Interpretation of the History of the Vietnam Veteran in the Movies by Stephen Sherman
Vietnam Vets without Hollywood, Without Tears by William K. Lane, Jr., Wall Street Journal, July 26, 1988
The Lost Patriots of Hollywood by Michelle Malkin
Dear United States Armed Forces, by Doug Powers, WorldNetDaily, May 10, 2004

Suggested Reading:

Vietnam at the Movies, Michael Lee Lanning, Fawcett Columbine, New York, 1994


"Can I ask you a personal question?...You have any gremlins that .. . make ... Vietnam a problem?"
"You see Platoon?"
"Everybody did, and Apocalypse Now and Full Metal Jacket."
"You see me in any of them?"
"What's your point?"
"Your ideas about Nam come from Hollywood. Hell, my ideas about Desert Storm come from CNN. Anyway, I missed the rock-and-roll drug opera. I had pure Greek tragedy at the end."

Chuck Logan, The Price of Blood, Harper Collins, New York, 1997