Full Metal Jacket
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Stanley Kubrick's return to filmmaking after a seven-year hiatus, this film crystallizes the experience of the Vietnam War by concentrating on a group of raw Marine volunteers. Based on Gustav Hasford's novel The Short Timers, the film's first half details the volunteers' harrowing boot-camp training under the profane, power-saw guidance of drill instructor Sgt. Hartman (R. Lee Ermey, a real-life drill instructor whose performance is one of the most terrifyingly realistic on record). Part two takes place in Nam, as seen through the eyes of the now thoroughly indoctrinated… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 94%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"If his considerable achievement in this long- awaited film falls short of his Olympian standards, there is a reason that ought to give Kubrick some satisfaction. The world has caught up with Kubrick and what he has to say."
‑ Desmond Ryan, Philadelphia Inquirer
"There is a real fear at the heart of this monstrously armored, desperately defensive film."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Tribune
"One of Kubrick's foremost triumphs, a genuinely challenging and uncomfortable war film"
‑ Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy
"If a film doesn't give us people, it has to offer a substitute -- an idea, a style, a vision. Full Metal Jacket comes up blank."
‑ Ben Yagoda, Philadelphia Daily News
"It still qualifies as one of Kubrick's most underrated pictures, and it's second only to Apocalypse Now as the best Vietnam War movie ever made."
‑ Matt Brunson, Creative Loafing
"It may seem too spare, too clinical, its moments of war even too familiar for some. But, aiming for minds as well as hearts, Kubrick hits his target squarely."
‑ Sheila Benson, Los Angeles Times
"It's a great piece of filmmaking, diminished only by a second act that fails to live up to the first act of the Marines in training."
‑ Gene Siskel, Chicago Tribune
"No amount of stylistic analysis, however, is likely to explain why a man would devote more than three years of his life to making a war movie in which violent death isn't meant to move us. Does Kubrick really think we're not callous enough about war?"
‑ Terrence Rafferty, The Nation
"Relentlessly harsh in its images and language, Full Metal Jacket is nonetheless the most artful film yet made about the Vietnam War."
‑ David Sterritt, Christian Science Monitor
"Kubrick again turns his unsparing eye to the dread of existence...of a godless universe...of moral frailty and civilization gone wrong...[Blu-ray]"
‑ Peter Canavese, Groucho Reviews
"What gives this story its power is not really its originality, but the relentlessness of Kubrick's black-comic vision and the tightness of his focus."
‑ Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel
"Full Metal Jacket is not a realistic film -- it is horror-comic superrealism, from a God's-eye view -- but it should fully engage the ordinary movie grunt."
‑ Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine
"While its message is simple -- innocent young Americans are taught to be machine-like killers -- its technique is extraordinary."
‑ Adrian Turner, Radio Times
"Full Metal Jacket is a great motion picture. Be warned, however, that it is harsh and explicit."
‑ Roger Hurlburt, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
"Extremely graphic, violent Vietnam War film."
‑ Sarah Wenk, Common Sense Media
More reviews for Full Metal Jacket on Rotten Tomatoes

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