Full Metal Jacket

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Full Metal Jacket is a 1987 war film by Stanley Kubrick, based on the novel The Short-Timers by Gustav Hasford. It stars Matthew Modine, Vincent D'Onofrio, and former Marine Sergeant R. Lee Ermey. The title refers to the full metal jacket bullet used by infantry riflemen. The film follows a squad of U.S. Marines through their training and depicts some of the experiences of two of them in the Tet Offensive (1968) during the Vietnam War.

Contents

Plot

During the Vietnam War, a group of new United States Marine Corps recruits arrives at Parris Island for recruit training. After having their heads shaved, they meet their drill instructor, Gunnery Sergeant Hartman (R. Lee Ermey). Hartman, tasked with producing battle-ready Marines, immediately begins abusing his recruits in an attempt to harden them mentally and emotionally. The film focuses its attention on Privates 'Joker' (Matthew Modine) and 'Cowboy' (Arliss Howard), while the overweight Leonard Lawrence (Vincent D'Onofrio) draws the wrath of Hartman, who nicknames him "Gomer Pyle".

Unresponsive to Hartman's constant discipline, Pyle is paired with Joker. With this help, Pyle begins to improve, but progress is halted when Hartman discovers a jelly doughnut in his foot locker and Hartman punishes the entire platoon. As a result, the platoon hazes Pyle with a "blanket party," pinning him to his bunk with a blanket and beating him with bars of soap wrapped in towels. Joker reluctantly joins in and beats Pyle several times. In the weeks following the beating, Pyle undergoes a transformation, becoming a model Marine and an expert rifleman. However, he displays signs of mental breakdown - including social withdrawal and talking to his M14.

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