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Full Metal Jacket (1987)

 -  Drama | War  -  10 July 1987 (USA)
8.4
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Ratings: 8.4/10 from 372,365 users   Metascore: 78/100
Reviews: 637 user | 140 critic | 18 from Metacritic.com

A pragmatic U.S. Marine observes the dehumanizing effects the U.S.-Vietnam War has on his fellow recruits from their brutal boot camp training to the bloody street fighting in Hue.

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(novel), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Top 250 #87 | Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 9 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Gny. Sgt. Hartman (as Lee Ermey)
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Kieron Jecchinis ...
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Tim Colceri ...
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Doc Jay (as John Stafford)
Bruce Boa ...
Ian Tyler ...
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Storyline

A two-segment look at the effect of the military mindset and war itself on Vietnam era Marines. The first half follows a group of recruits in boot camp under the command of the punishing Gunnery Sergeant Hartman. The second half shows one of those recruits, Joker, covering the war as a correspondent for Stars and Stripes, focusing on the Tet offensive. Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

An Epic Story of the Vietnam War [Australia Theatrical] See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

10 July 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket  »

Box Office

Budget:

$17,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$46,357,676 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The entire film was shot in England (Pinewood Studios and Bassingbourn Barracks). Footage of an actual graduation ceremony at Parris Island was used in the film, with an insert from England added to it. For the final battle scenes set in Hue, Stanley Kubrick was able to use the abandoned gasworks town of Beckton on the River Thames. Researchers painstakingly went through dozens of shots of the real Hue in order to make sure Beckton looked authentic, and palm trees were brought into the area to create a tropical effect. See more »

Goofs

When the full colonel approaches Joker and his friends at the open pit grave, all parties salute each other. In reality, saluting is not done in combat areas, since it identifies officers as primary targets. Also in this scene, the colonel's shirt is missing its required name tape and Marine Corps tape. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: I am Gunnery Sergeant Hartman, your senior drill instructor. From now on you will speak only when spoken to, and the first and last words out of your filthy sewers will be "Sir". Do you maggots understand that?
Recruits: [In unison in a normal speaking tone] Sir, yes Sir.
Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: Bullshit I can't hear you. Sound off like you got a pair!
Recruits: [In unison, much louder] SIR, YES SIR!
Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: If you ladies leave my island, if you survive recruit training, you will be a weapon. You will be a minister of death praying ...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Men Who Stare at Goats (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

These Boots Are Made For Walkin'
Written by Lee Hazlewood
Performed by Nancy Sinatra
Courtesy of Boots Enterprises, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

The best war film I have seen
13 October 2004 | by (Charlotte, NC) – See all my reviews

NO SPOILERS! This is a review, not a synopsis.

First of all I love Kubrick's work, so I came into this with a bias. However I have seen a lot of action and war films, and this one, to an individual who never went to war, seems the most true-to-life, taken as a whole. This IS how you have to look at this film, incidentally; trying to break it down into two or three parts and say which was better is missing the point of the film, I think.

In the same way that "Trainspotting" was an anti-drug film that did not gloss over anything, "Full Metal Jacket" is (for me) an anti-war film that stares straight at the ugliness of war and the potential for violence within almost all people, especially those trained, conditioned, even twisted, into military roles, without preaching even a single time. Less allegory and more applicability! Wonderful!

The camera work was superb. I felt like I was walking through the movie with the Marines, from the barracks to the battlefield scenes.

I have seen others criticize this film for the voice over, but I felt that it was used sparingly, and was helpful, not overdone. The narrator doesn't say anything that seems out-of-place.

Others have commented on the music, the acting, and so on, so I won't add my repetitive comments, except that the drill sergeant is perfect!

The combination of the demented treatment the recruits receive in boot camp with the combined "hours of boredom, seconds of terror" feel of the Vietnam scenes is intense and not for everyone, but feels REAL.

10 out of 10, perfect.


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