Full Metal Jacket (1987)


A pragmatic U.S. Marine observes the dehumanizing effects the Vietnam War has on his fellow recruits from their brutal boot camp training to the bloody street fighting in Hue. (IMDb)
Hartman’s over-the-top rants and boot camp chants are paired perfectly with the repetitive settings and symmetrical cinematography to make a cohesive and compelling first half, brought to a head by Pyle’s brilliant transformation from sympathetic to sinister (see the chilling bathroom scene). The second half falters from a lack of focus, but still retains interest thanks to a unique soundtrack, riveting long takes, and provoking commentary on war (sometimes literally–see the interview segment).
8/10 (Great)


    1. could be! kubrick’s technical genius is certainly on full display here, but i found the second half a little harder to latch onto because of its scattered narrative! i’ll definitely look forward to reading your thoughts on it if you decide to revisit it!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Agreed! Uneven, for sure, but still one of Kubrick’s best, in my opinion. Nearly every scene leaves a lasting impact. Great review, Joel!

    Liked by 1 person

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