Cover image for Be good, smile pretty
Be good, smile pretty
Mason, Randy.
[DVD version].
Publication Information:
[United States] : Docurama : Distributed by New Video Group, [2004]

Physical Description:
1 videodisc (56 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in.
Chronicles the heart-wrenching journey to understand and cope with the loss shared by the estimated 20,000 American children whose fathers were killed in Vietnam. Weaving emotionally compelling interviews with home movies, stock footage, and family photos. Along her journey, Tragos uncovers a 30-year-old mystery, as she comes to know her father as a man. Untangled from the memory of a war that wounded a nation. Some discoveries are almost too difficult to bear, it is ultimately the truth that allows her, and her entire family, to understand and move forward.
General Note:
Originally released as a television documentary program in 2003.

Special features: extended interviews; photo gallery; resource guide; filmmaker statement; crew biographies.

For specific features see interactive menu.
Reading Level:
MPAA rating: Not rated.
Corporate Subject:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DVD 7340 Adult DVD Open Shelf

On Order



Writer/director/producer Tracy Droz Tragos makes her feature debut with the documentary Be Good, Smile Pretty. In 2001, Tragos did an Internet search on her father's name: Lt. Donald Glenn Droz. She ended up reading a detailed account of her father's death in Vietnam, where his ship was ambushed in 1969. Because she was only three-months-old when he died, Tragos never had a chance to know her father. Her desire to learn about him and mourn his passing led to a personal journey across the country. Along with help from her mother, Judy Droz Keyes, she met with his colleagues from the war, watched his old home movies, and listened to his voice on audio tapes. Eventually, she traveled to the Vietnam Memorial and met with other adults who lost a parent in the war. Wanting to help others like her, Tragos created the non-profit organization the Orphans of War Foundation. The film's title comes from the phrase Lt. Droz used to close his letters. Be Good, Smile Pretty won Best Documentary Feature at the IFP Los Angeles Film Festival in 2003. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, Rovi

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

In March 2001, through a search, Tracy Droz Tragos found an account of the 1969 combat death in the Mekong Delta of her father, navy Lt. Donald Droz. Knowing almost nothing about the man, Tragos looked further, and her quest resulted in the opening of long-closed attic trunks filled with Droz's photos, letters, and memorabilia from the Vietnam era and, more important, the opening of Droz's wife's and his mother's hearts to share their long-repressed memories with his only daughter. Visits with Droz's Vietnam comrades and his classmates at his Naval Academy reunion round out his military history. Tragos's mother speculates that her daughter now knows her father better than she herself did. The DVD includes a photo gallery, extended interviews, and scene selection. The editing of video, home movies, and stills into this seamless presentation is extraordinary. Excellent quality and a touching story; highly recommended.-Cliff Glaviano, Bowling Green State Univ. Libs., OH (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.