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Full Metal Jacket is a 1987 war film produced and directed by Stanley Kubrick. It is an adaptation of the 1979 novel The Short-Timers by Gustav Hasford and stars Matthew Modine, Vincent D'Onofrio, and R. Lee Ermey. The film follows a platoon of U.S. Marines through their training and depicts some of the experiences of two of them in the Tet Offensive during the Vietnam War. The film title refers to the full metal jacket bullet used by infantry riflemen.
Matthew Modine as Private/Corporal/Sergeant James T. "Joker" Davis, the protagonist-narrator who claims to have joined the Corps to see combat, and to become the first one on his block with a confirmed kill. He witnesses Pyle's insanity in boot camp, but nevertheless becomes a "squared away" Marine. He later serves as an independent-minded combat correspondent accompanying the Lusthog Squad in the field. Joker wears a peace-sign medallion on his uniform as well as writing "Born to Kill" on his helmet, which he explains as an expression of Jungian philosophy concerning the duality of man.
Vincent D'Onofrio as Private Leonard "Gomer Pyle" Lawrence: An overweight, clumsy, slow-witted recruit who becomes the focus of Drill Instructor Gunnery Sergeant Hartman's attention for his incompetence and excess weight, making him the platoon scapegoat. After a blanket party from the rest of the platoon for failing almost everything and earning them collective punishments, he turns psychotic and talks to his rifle, "Charlene". He later shoots and kills Hartman while in the latrine and then himself in front of Joker. The humiliating nickname Gomer Pyle originates from a likable but dim character from the American television program Gomer Pyle, USMC (first introduced as a regular character on The Andy Griffith Show).
R. Lee Ermey as Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: the archetypal Parris Island drill instructor who trains his recruits to transform them into Marines. R. Lee Ermey actually served as a US Marine drill instructor during the Vietnam War. Based on this experience, he ad libbed much of his dialogue in the film. Ermey had also portrayed a Marine drill instructor in the similarly bifurcated Vietnam film, The Boys in Company C.
Arliss Howard as Private/Sergeant "Cowboy" Evans, a Texan who attends boot camp with Joker and Pyle. He becomes a rifleman and later encounters Joker in Vietnam, where Cowboy takes command of a rifle squad. In Full Metal Jacket, he quickly dies of a sucking chest wound while in Joker's arms, after weakly saying: "I can hack it...", surrounded by the few remaining members of his squad.
Adam Baldwin as Sergeant "Animal Mother": the nihilistic M60 machine gunner of the Lusthog Squad. Animal Mother scorns any authority but his own, and attempts to rule by intimidation. Animal Mother believes in victory as the only object of war. His helmet bears the inscription: "I Am Become Death", a quotation from the Bhagavad Gita.
Dorian Harewood as Corporal "Eightball": The African-American member of the Lusthog Squad, insensitive about his ethnicity (e.g. "Put a ***** behind the trigger"), and Animal Mother's closest friend. The sniper shoots him repeatedly in an attempt to lure the others into the open, before killing him.
Kevyn Major Howard as Private First Class "Rafter Man": Rafter Man works as a combat photographer in the Stars and Stripes office with Joker. He requests permission to accompany Joker into Huế and ultimately saves him by shooting the sniper, an act which gives him much pride and exhilaration.
Ed O'Ross as Lieutenant Walter J. "Touchdown" Schinowski: The commander of the Lusthog Squad's platoon, he was a college football player at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana. He is killed in an ambush outside of Huế City.
John Terry as Lieutenant Lockhart: The PAO Officer in Charge and Joker's assignment editor. He has combat-reporting experience, but uses his officer rank to avoid returning to the field, he says on account of the danger and the bugs, rationalizing that his journalistic duties keep him where he belongs, "in the rear with the gear".
Kieron Jecchinis as Sergeant "Crazy Earl": The squad leader, he is forced to assume platoon command when Platoon Commander 2LT Walter J. Schinowski is killed. Touching a booby trapped toy kills him. As in the novel he carries a BB gun, which is visible just before he dies.
John Stafford as Doc Jay: A Navy corpsman attached to the Lusthog squad. Doc Jay mocks US President Lyndon B. Johnson when he is interviewed by documentary men in the film. Doc Jay quotes LBJ when he was Vice President expressing his intentions to avoid sending American soldiers to Vietnam. He is wounded by the sniper while attempting to drag Eightball to safety; the sniper uses a subsequent automatic burst to finish them both off when Doc Jay attempts to indicate the direction of the sniper.
Tim Colceri as the door gunner, the Loadmaster and machine gunner of the H-34 Choctaw helicopter transporting Joker and Rafter Man to the Tet Offensive front. Inflight, he shoots at civilians, while enthusiastically repeating "Get some!", boasting "157 dead Gooks killed, and 50 water buffaloes too." When Joker asks if that includes women and children, he admits it stating, "Sometimes." Joker then asks, "How could you shoot women and children?" to which the door gunner replies jokingly, "Easy, you just don't lead 'em so much!...Ha, ha, ha, ha...Ain't war hell?!" This scene is adapted from Michael Herr's 1977 book Dispatches.
Papillon Soo Soo as Da Nang Hooker, an attractive and scantily dressed prostitute who approaches Joker and Rafterman at a street corner during the first scene in Vietnam. She is memorable for the phrases, "Me love you long time", "Me so horny", and "Me sucky sucky", which were later sampled by 2 Live Crew in their song, "Me So Horny" and in Sir Mix-a-Lot's "Baby Got Back".
Peter Edmund as Private "Snowball" Brown, an African-American recruit, the butt of jibes from Hartman about "fried chicken and watermelon". Snowball informs him that Lee Harvey Oswald shot Kennedy from "that book suppository [sic] building, Sir!". He does not appear in Vietnam.
In: Other Entertainment, Liveleak Challenges
Tags: full metal jacket, vietnam war, film, U.S. Marines, Tet offensive, Stanley Kubrick, hooker scenes, funny, hilarious
Location: England, United Kingdom (UK/GB) (load item map)
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