Cinema: Propaganda Chiller

In the Year of the Pig is a new kind of chiller movie. Audiences sit in helpless frustration watching scenes of unreeling historical horror. Producer-Director Emile de Antonio (Point of Order) has taken his ghoulish episodes from newsreels made in and about Viet Nam over the past three decades. The result is a slanted but devastating account of the spiraling American involvement in Southeast Asia.

The cast of characters—politicians, journalists, civilians, combatants—at once supply historical continuity and act as a kind of tragic chorus. Journalists like Jean Lacouture and David Halberstam recount the development and deepening of the war. Meanwhile the...

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