Although, not one of the better films of the year, I do have a few thoughts. As a six-year US Navy veteran, I can certainly attest to the fact that lots of people got 'Dear Jody' letters. The joke was that once the big carriers go out on deployment, the wives typically lost their minds. Pretty sad but true. For the record, I never got a such a letter. I don't think I could've been married during the very long deployments, the time away from family were very tough on relationships.
Both of my 'cruises' were results of the Desert Shield/Storm conflicts. I recall a time where we were at sea for forty-five consecutive days without pulling into port. Pretty nasty stuff. Oh yeah, in keeping with the Navy tradition, we did get a can of beer.
I digress.. Regarding the film, much angst was made to describe the brainwashing that goes into the idea of romanticizing war. I suppose it's necessary to get youngsters to sacrifice life and limb. Another aspect of the flick that was another military reality 'hurry up and wait', that is this idea of moving quickly to be in a constant state of readiness, but not actually doing anything. I do remember spending lots of time steaming around the Red Sea. This must have gone on for months before we finally received the order to fire the Tomahawk missiles. The flick did a fairly decent job describing the monotony preparing for a war that seemed as though it would never happen.
Otherwise, I thought the movie was pretty weak.