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In THE BOYS WHO SAID NO!, young Americans, barely adults, find their faith in their country shaken by the Vietnam War. Inspired by Black America’s crusade for equal rights, young Americans choose to resist the Vietnam War, and openly refuse military service, risking prison to end the horrors of war.

The filmmakers and people in the film are available to participate in your screening event. Please contact ehrlich.judith [at] gmail [dot] com.


THE BOYS WHO SAID NO! is the first documentary film to profile the young men and women who actively opposed the military draft in order to end the Vietnam War. The film shows how their personal and collective acts of nonviolent resistance, risking arrest and imprisonment for up to 5 years, were a critical part of the antiwar movement, intensifying opposition to the war and eventually forcing an end to both conscription and the war.

Drawing on original interviews with more than thirty male and female nonviolent activists and historians, THE BOYS WHO SAID NO! explores the influence of Gandhian nonviolence and the impact of the civil rights movement on Resistance members, a connection illustrated in footage of Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. visiting and supporting Joan Baez and others jailed for blocking the Oakland Induction Center in 1967.

THE BOYS WHO SAID NO! is an overdue and definitive account of the principled and powerful nonviolent resistance to America's most problematic war. These young men risked years in prison to challenge a war of tragic human proportions. Their leadership, personal sacrifices, and example had a direct effect on ending the war, and are an important example for today's movements for social justice and peace.

95 minutes
SDH Captioned

Directed by Judith Ehrlich
Produced by Christopher Jones, Judith Ehrlich, Bill Prince
Executive Producers: Clara Bingham, Robert Estrin, Alan Gould, Robert Levering and Carolyn Leone Levering, Robert and Marie Weissbourd, Bob Zaugh
Editor: Scott Walton
Writers: Michael Chandler, Judith Ehrlich
Composer: Beth Custer
Narrator: Michael Stewart Foley

We offer two basic screening options: in-person or virtual. Book an in-person screening using the button below. For an online screening, fill out the virtual screening request form.

For more information on virtual screening options, visit our Learn About Screenings page.


COMMUNITY SCREENINGS (single events with license to charge admission)
$100 Small Community Screening (1-50 people)
$200 Medium Community Screening (51-100 people)
$350 Large Community Screening (100+ people)

"Terrific film...An ode to the power of activism."
G. Allen Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle

"Some films are too important not to see. THE BOYS WHO SAID NO! is one of those films. There are many different kinds of courage. Having moral and social courage to stand up for what one believes in is perhaps one of the most courageous things anyone can do. Watch THE BOYS WHO SAID NO! to educate yourself on an important part of American history and watch it to renew your faith in the belief that your voice also has the power to make a lasting difference."
Documentary Drive

"A stand out film...THE BOYS WHO SAID NO! is a playbook for the resistors of conscience putting individual belief in combined effort to change the minds of America. Profound and startling in its revelation of how the revolution to justice starts with one person understanding their power to say no. Fascinating because it is a movement from the beginning to end offering lessons learnt to future fighters for justice."
Annie McLoughlin, Showreel

"There's more courage and moral integrity in this documentary than in any fictional blockbuster. The wars now underway and those being threatened are as unjust as those 50 years ago, and with women being added to draft registration, we need more saying NO. We also need to recognize the scale of the horror of the war on Southeast Asia and avoid the foolishness of desiring a draft. Our planet is imperiled by military spending, and the time to learn from and act on the lessons of this film is not in the future. It is right now."
David Swanson, Executive Director of, Campaign Coordinator for, Advisory Board Member of Veterans For Peace

"Wonderful, truly inspiring and informative, with a powerful message about the necessity of resisting unjust war and the imperative of nonviolence. The linkage to the civil rights movement and the role of Dr. King is brilliant and critically important. A fantastic job on an essential film that everyone who cares about justice and peace will want to see."
David Cortright, Vietnam-era Veteran, Director of Policy Studies, Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, University of Notre Dame

"THE BOYS WHO SAID NO! tells an important story...Theirs was a cause built on fundamental American responsibilities - that we speak truth to power and resist the unjust, unjustifiable, and illegal. It's an engaging, compelling documentary with considerable relevance today. And there's a lesson in it that transcends the Vietnam era: that individual actions can make a difference."
Leonard Steinhorn, Affiliate Professor of History, School of Communication, American University

"There is never a blueprint for social movements - there are templates - and this film is an important one. It's powerful. ...beautifully highlights another link on the chain of the long arch of American activism."
Susan Erenrich, Ph.D., Adjunct Professorial Lecturer, School of Professional and Extended Studies, American University

"Finally, an account that shows the diversity of the antiwar movement! History comes alive in this thorough account of draft resistance, its roots in the Civil Rights Movement, and the eventual fusion of the two. Young viewers fighting for equity and a healthy planet will be particularly appreciative of this chance to witness the efficacy of creative nonviolent actions, while those who think they know the Vietnam War era well will learn new details about the coalitions that were formed in the efforts to end it."
Elise Lemire, Professor of Literature, Purchase College SUNY, Author, Battle Green Vietnam: The 1971 March on Concord, Lexington, and Boston

"Shows how bravery and courage are contagious. As this feature presents, it's when one steps out of the pages of history that people can pave a way for real change. Successful resistance doesn't have to be violent, and social change can start from the smallest of acts. An interesting, thought-provoking and ultimately challenging film, THE BOYS WHO SAID NO! is not to be missed."
Joel Kalkopf, Switch

"This inspiring and long-overdue documentary explores a decisive era in recent American history...An excellent service in memorializing this enduring portrait of America during an earlier time of momentous inner conflict."
Emily Mendel, Culture Vulture

"Make it a must-see."
Local News Matters, Bay Area

"Enlightening and absorbing...A film that speaks to the present as eloquently and as urgently to its audience as the resistors did to their audiences 50 years ago. THE BOYS WHO SAID NO! is too important a film to be missed."
Emily Chase,

"An insightful and comprehensive documentary. The film is especially prescient today as it dovetails in with the Civil Rights movement and the current issues relating to the racial divide in America and the rest of the world."
Peter Krausz, Movie Metropolis, WYN-FM Melbourne

"A powerful film. Ninety minutes of goodness."
KTVU, Fox Mornings on 2

"A fascinating documentary about the lengths that a government would go to in order to keep a war machine working, and also the ways in which passive as well as active protest can be a tool of change."
Samaya Boron, Right Now

"A fascinating exploration of the protest movement that helped reinforce draft resistance during the Vietnam War era."
Dov Kornits, Filmink

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