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Platoon Movie Review

stone awards director picture

I saw plenty of movies between 1978 and 1985, but never the Best Picture of the Year, by choice. As I listened to people drone on and on about their favorite sequences from these films, I really didn't think I was missing anything and still don't. My own favorites were movies I watched over and over again and still do, stuff like Dinner for Adele, Escape from Alcatraz, Somewhere in Time, True Confessions, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Heat and Dust, Another Country, and Dance with a Stranger. Now that I've established my qualifications as a bit of a Philistine, I have to say that what burns in my memory about Platoon is that goofball moment from one of the Naked Gun pictures when a deliriously happy Leslie Nielsen and Priscilla Presley come bounding out of the movie theatre where Platoon is playing as Herman's Hermits sing “Something Tells Me I'm into Something Good.” I was dragged to see Platoon by a guy who predicted that it would be the Best Picture of the Year. All I knew was that I'd already seen the Best Picture of the Year and that was Salvador! But you can resign yourself to anything, even a 113-minute war movie with no female characters in it. Based on the true experiences of its filmmaker, Platoon is graphic and well acted, especially by Willem Dafoe. It launched a wave of other Vietnam war movies that I didn't see. Once you've been scared to bits by On the Beach and Fail-Safe, what's the point? I give it four bones for the cognoscenti, and two bones for fans of Leslie Nielsen and/or James Woods, for an average of

1986 (R) 113m/C Charlie Sheen, Willem Dafoe, Tom Berenger, Francesco Quinn, Forest Whitaker, John C. McGinley, Kevin Dillon, Richard Edson, Reggie Johnson, Keith David, Johnny Depp; D: Oliver Stone; W: Oliver Stone; C: Robert Richardson; M: Georges Delerue. Academy Awards ‘86: Best Director (Stone), Best Film Editing, Best Picture, Best Sound; British Academy Awards ‘87: Best Director (Stone); Directors Guild of America Awards ‘86: Best Director (Stone); Golden Globe Awards ‘87: Best Director (Stone), Best Film—Drama, Best Supporting Actor (Berenger); Independent Spirit Awards ‘87: Best Cinematography, Best Director (Stone), Best Film, Best Screenplay; Nominations: Academy Awards ‘86: Best Cinematography, Best Original Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor (Berenger, Dafoe). VHS, LV, Closed Caption

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