The unnamed narrator has become involved as a creative consultant on a Vietnam War movie called The Hamlet, directed by a man known as the Auteur. In acting as a consultant on the movie, the narrator hopes that he will help the Auteur give a realistic, sympathetic account of the Vietnamese people and their struggles during the war.
There is deep significance in the narrator's involvement with the Auteur and his movie. By contributing to what he hopes will be an honest, truthful depiction of the Vietnamese people, he is reestablishing a connection to them which was lost when he left his mother. In essence, the narrator is making amends for the sins of the past, the sins he committed against both his mother and his country.
In the event, however, the narrator is to be thoroughly disappointed with the Auteur's handiwork. When he watches the film for the first time, he realizes that, instead of giving a realistic depiction of the Vietnamese people and the war in which they fought, died, and suffered, the Auteur has actually produced a typically slick Hollywood distortion of history in which white men are portrayed as the heroes. Contrary to what he thought, acting as a consultant on this travesty of the truth has not helped the narrator to get in touch with his Vietnamese roots.