Platoon

"Extraordinary"

Platoon Review


Like no other movie could tell, Platoon shows us categorically that war -- and especially the Vietnam War -- is hell.

The story is vintage Oliver Stone -- based on his own experiences in the bush with only a few moments of fictionalization. In Platoon, Charlie Sheen plays a young and naive Private Chris Taylor, a newbie in Nam who is thrown waist-deep into the jungle only hours after arrival. Within a week he's regretting having volunteered, already a shell of the man he was in the States.

Charlie's great and all, but Platoon's thrill is in its supporting cast, namely Tom Berenger as a rather evil yet invincible Staff Sargeant, and Willem Dafoe as the unforgettably moral Sargeant Elias. When Berenger and Elias spar, it's epic acting -- and as Stone details on a commentary track, it's a bit ironic since up until this film, Berenger had always played good guys (a la The Big Chill) and Dafoe had always played terrorists. Dafoe, of course, would go on to play Jesus Christ.

Platoon also plays host to a cadre of then-unknown supporting players, including Johnny Depp, Forest Whitaker, and John C. McGinley (also in a celebrated role as the cowardly bully of the platoon), but it's Stone's unflinching script that makes this film ever so sobering. The Pentagon wanted nothing to do with it, claiming its brutality was "unrealistic," but technical advisor Captain Dale Dye helped Stone ensure this movie is the most accurate depiction of the war in Vietnam that you'll ever see. Both Stone and Dye have commentary tracks on the new DVD; Stone does his usual narration of the film ("...the VC fires! It's confusing! Oh, that's a good shot...") while Dye goes into the minutaie of every military detail you see.

Highly recommended as one of Stone's greatest works.

The new 2-disc collector's set/20th Anniversary Edition features the same two commentary tracks as the original DVD (one from Stone, one from Dye), plus a second disc of extras, including deleted scenes and a gaggle of making-of documentaries.



Platoon

Facts and Figures

Genre: War

Run time: 120 mins

In Theaters: Friday 6th February 1987

Box Office Worldwide: $138.5M

Budget: $6M

Distributed by: Orion Pictures

Production compaines: Orion Pictures, Hemdale Film Corporation

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 88%
Fresh: 51 Rotten: 7

IMDB: 8.2 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer:

Starring: as Sgt. Bob Barnes, as Pvt. Chris Taylor, as Sgt. Elias Grodin, as Big Harold, John C. McGinley as Sgt. Red O'Neill, as Bunny, as Private Gator Lerner, as Rhah, as Sal, as King, as Lt. Wolfe, as Crawford, as Alpha Company major in bunker

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.