"The dead know only one thing: its better
to be alive."
Private Joker (Matthew Modine)
"The best war movie ever made!"
Jay Scott, TORONTO GLOBE AND MAIL
Stars: Matthew Modine, Adam Baldwin, Vincent DOnofrio,
Lee Ermey, Dorian Harewood, Arliss Howard, Kevyn Major Howard, Ed ORoss
Director: Stanley Kubrick
- Full Metal Jacket was based on the 1979 novel The Short-Timers,
which recounted author Gustav Hasfords experiences as a combat
correspondent in Vietnam.
- After obtaining the rights to the novel in 1983, Stanley Kubrick
asked author Michael Herr, author of the celebrated Vietnam War book
Dispatches, to collaborate with him on the screenplay.
- Kubrick decided to change the title to Full Metal Jacket,
a term describing a bullet encased in a copper jacket which helps
it feed through a rifle.
- To cast the film, Kubrick and Warner Bros. placed ads throughout
the US for young aspiring actors, asking them to send in videotapes
of themselves performing a scene about Vietnam.
- Lee Ermey was originally hired as a technical advisor and to indoctrinate
extras into the military-like atmosphere of the production. Kubrick
was so impressed with Ermeys presence and barrages of insults
that he cast him as the drill sergeant.
- To enhance the realism of the boot camp scenes, Kubrick never let
Ermey rehearse with the other actors, which created strong, real emotions
when the scenes were filmed.
- Although the film takes place in Parris Island, SC and Hue, Vietnam,
the entire production was shot in England. The boot camp was built
on an industrial site in Enfield, and Parris Island was recreated
at a British Army base in Bassingbourne, under Lee Ermeys supervision.
- A 1930s abandoned coke-smelting plant in Beckton, a suburb of East
London, was used for the battlefield scenes. The buildings there were
designed by the same French architects who had worked in Hue, Vietnam.
- The original music in the film was credited to "Abigail Mead,"
a pseudonym for Vivian Kubrick, Stanley Kubricks daughter.
- The film earned an Academy Award® nomination for
Best Adapted Screenplay.
A superb ensemble cast falls in for action in Stanley Kubricks
brilliant saga about the Vietnam War and the dehumanizing process that
turns people into trained killers. Joker (Matthew Modine), Animal Mother
(Adam Baldwin), Gomer (Vincent DOnofrio), Eightball (Dorian Harewood),
Cowboy (Arliss Howard) and more all are plunged into a boot-camp
hell pitbulled by a leatherlung D.I. (Lee Ermey) who views the would-be
devil dogs as grunts, maggots or something less.
The action is savage, the story unsparing, the dialogue spiked with
scathing humor. Full Metal Jacket, from its rigors of basic training
to its nightmare of combat in Hue City, scores a cinematic direct hit.
Copyright © 2000 Warner
Bros. All Rights Reserved.
Academy Award® and Oscar® are the registered
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marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.