A private university in Da Nang recently premiered a historical documentary on an iconic 1965 air battle between the Vietnamese and U.S. forces in north-central Vietnam.
“Vietnam Air War: The First Swallows” is a 50-minute two-part documentary featuring the Battle of Ham Rong in Thanh Hoa Province on April 4, 1965.
It was the Vietnam People’s Air Force’s first air battle in defense against airstrikes from U.S. Naval Air Forces.
Dr. Le Nguyen Bao, president of Duy Tan University and director of the documentary, said he led a team of over 20 people to found Silver Swallows Studio and worked for five years on this first major project.
3D modeling technology was used to recreate the historic battle where outnumbered Vietnamese forces were able to defend the Ham Rong Bridge in Thanh Hoa, which was vital to wartime transportation, against U.S. strikes.
At the time of the battle, Vietnamese pilots had less than 200 flying hours and were operating four obsolete MiG-17 fighter aircraft sponsored by the Soviet Union against a fleet of modern U.S. aircrafts.
“There was pressure to stay truthful and objective to historical accounts of the event while avoiding turning it into a propaganda film,” Bao said.
“It would be a crime against history to make a factually inaccurate documentary,” he added.
The documentary was screened in Hanoi for the first time on Wednesday after making its premiere in Da Nang on April 26.
“Watching the documentary is as intense as being in the real fight,” said Lieutenant General Tran Hanh, who was part of the Sao Do (Red Stars) Regiment that participated in the Battle of Ham Rong.
“We are deeply moved,” Hanh said.
|A still photo taken from the trailer for ‘Vietnam Air War: The First Swallows’ .|