Monday, August 24, 2015

Platoon (1986)

Today's movie is Platoon.  It takes place during the Vietnam war.  The terrain was a lot different in this war than in the first two world wars.  Instead of mountains and farmland fields, there was dense jungle brush and swampland.

The main character, Chris, dropped out of college to volunteer to fight.  He learns that most people there couldn't afford college and were drafted.  They don't value him at first because he hasn't been there long.

There are a lot of stars in this film, and they all were cast outside of their type.  Charlie Sheen plays Chris, who starts out naive and sweet, and that is not like him at all.  The helpful Sgt. Elias is played by Willem Dafoe, who normally plays villains.  Sgt. Barnes who shoots everyone including people on his own side that don't agree with him, is played by Tom Berenger, who usually plays good guys.  John C. Mcginley, who usually plays asshole characters like Dr. Cox, plays Sgt. O'Neill, who is actually a nice person.  This shows that in this film, you can't judge people because they might surprise you.

The film was based on Oliver Stone's experiences during the Vietnam War, and he mainly wrote to counteract what he saw in the Green Berets, feeling that it was false.  I never saw that film so I can't comment on that.

One thing the war does is change Chris.  He starts out hopeful and wanting to help everyone.  He receives the tiniest scratch and believes that he will die.  After seeing his fellow troops massacre innocent civilians and burn down villages, his personality toughens up.  At the end, he is shooting people while covered in blood.  He tells the others that he's fine.  How will this affect him when he goes home?  Will he go back to whatever he was studying in college or do something completely different?  War changes people, and usually not for the better.  I will give this film an 8/10.

No comments:

Post a Comment