Platoon

 (5,364)
8.11 h 59 min1986X-RayR
The film probes the psyche of the young soldiers who fought in Vietnam. Their camaraderie, their struggle for survival amid terrifying violence and madness of combat. Dealing with the day-to-day existence of an infantry rifle platoon of thirty guys from all walks of life, Platoon examines the fight between good and evil in the outfit and what it was really like to be a foot soldier in Vietnam.
Directors
Oliver Stone
Starring
Charlie SheenForest WhitakerJohnny Depp
Genres
DramaMilitary and War
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio languages
English
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Supporting actors
Kevin DillonWillem DafoeTom BerengerKeith DavidFrancesco QuinnJohn C. McGinley
Producers
Derek GibsonJohn DalyA. Kitman HoArnold Kopelson
Studio
MGM
Rating
R (Restricted)
Content advisory
Violencesubstance usesmokingsexual contentnudityfoul languagealcohol use
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Format
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Devices
Available to watch on supported devices

Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars

5364 global ratings

  1. 83% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 10% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 4% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 1% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 1% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

SkyGunnerReviewed in the United States on February 13, 2013
5.0 out of 5 stars
Vietnam like it was
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When I saw Platoon the first time I had trouble staying still. It seemed every five minutes, or so something on the screen would remind me of Nam. Finally, the last part of the movie , where they were overrun, I had to leave. My body was re-acting to the night, to the LP getting killed and the words of Vietnamese the North Vietnamese were yelling became too much. I started flashing back, because we had been overrun during TET68. My girlfriend stayed with me and at last got me calmed down( along with the Lorazepam my psychiatrist gave me) and we left.
It wasn't until the third time I watched it that I could sit all the way through, still wasn't easy. When you're overrun, just like the movie, you're filled with( what I called) Bloodlust! You are killing everything that doesn't look like an American. I don't have a lot of memories about it except for snippets of individual actions I was in. It's mass confusion and, like the movie, when the commanding officer expected that his company was losing, he called in what's called " Broken Arrow", which means an American unit is being wiped out and needs all possible assistance and the Air Force responded. The CO called them down right on top of his unit. If you'll check your history, we didn't surrender in Vietnam. We didn't talk about it, it was understood that we would all go down fighting to the last man. We didn't give quarter, nor did we ask for it. We always went to the knife in our fights, you kill me or I'll kill you. In our case, our CO called in artillery on our position to kill the enemy that was killing all of us. There's always survivors of this, where if we just kept fighting, all would die.
Platoon was the closest I'd seen to action like it was. Just as an aside, we were overrun on Hwy 13( Thunder Road) close to Cambodia and that part of the Ho Chi Minh trail. Oliver Stone had been there and he got it right on the fighting.
185 people found this helpful
Amazon CustomerReviewed in the United States on June 17, 2016
5.0 out of 5 stars
like a young Johnny Depp character dying was agonizing and ...
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A brillant movie, timeless in its execution. Most veterans, with whom I've spoke, indicated that Platoon was the closest to how things actually were over there. For the history buff, this would give you a fairly accurate glimpse into the Vietnam war through a cinematic perspective. Speaking of cinema, the intensity and wear on the actor's faces were real as they were put through an extensive boot camp before shooting even started, and most of them were both exhausted and worn out throughout most of the filming. Stone wanted to create a sense of reality and his accomplished his goal in spades. The big scenes that moved the story were robust, touching and in some cases overwhelming. Perhaps, though, the little scenes, like a young Johnny Depp character dying was agonizing and you almost felt you were dying with him. The amazing Forest Whitaker's screams as his character is assaulted by a land mine was sickening. Throughout all of this though, we're reminded again that before sex, drugs and rock and roll, Charlie Sheen was an incredibly talented actor. I felt the ant stings on his neck, the pain in his voice, the hopelessness in his tone and physical demeanor throughout the movie. He knew how to step it up and pull back the ethos during the course of the movie and, I think, had an understanding, perhaps somewhat gained from growing up in a talented cinematic family, of what was going on in a movie at any given time, from the scene to the specifics of his character, even though shooting never occurs linearly. Anyway, sit down, watch this movie. You'll be affected and will come away a better human being for it. Enjoy.
40 people found this helpful
ChrisSherrillReviewed in the United States on September 20, 2019
2.0 out of 5 stars
30 years
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I found the film disturbing when I first watched it years and years ago. It was more disturbing this time. By taking certain isolated incidents of brutality and presenting them as acts committed by one group of soldiers, Stone distorts history. Perhaps that was his goal. When the film was released 30 odd years ago there was a different narrative in this country – it was okay to say that the war was wrong and, therefore, that the service men and women who served deserved whatever guilt was dumped on us. Were there tragic actions during the war? Of course. There are always some bad apples, but we don’t burn down the entire orchard. And this film suggests that it was one-sided. Any interested party should read about what the NVA did to village and town leaders during the Tet offensive. That wasn’t isolated. Atrocities committed by US servicemen were rogue acts committed by individuals. Those committed by VC and NVA were done as a matter of policy. In both cases wrong, but in each case being committed from very different motivations. This movie may accurately depict the chaos of battle, but that is only a side effect.
6 people found this helpful
Dan RicheyReviewed in the United States on October 22, 2020
3.0 out of 5 stars
4K UHD Picture Quality Lacking
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This isn't a review of the film. The film is imperfect, and hasn't aged perfectly well, but is a bona fide classic with an excellent cast -- if you've seen it, you know how you feel about it. If you haven't, you should. If you're a film collector, it's worth buying at these prices even if you haven't seen it.

This is a review specifically of the 4K Ultra HD HDR streaming version offered on Amazon Prime. It's just not very good. I don't suspect it of being an upconvert or anything - there are definitely instances where the level of detail reflects that it's 4K. However, they are relatively few and far between.

First, the overall film quality is relatively low - soft, grainy, with some instances where the image is a little out of focus. Not surprising for a film from this era and shot on location in gritty fashion like Platoon was. I'm fine with that - I prefer that film look like film, and that it more or less look its age. I'm not one of those people who isn't happy with a 4K presentation if it doesn't look like a demo reel. But if you've seen the UHD Blu Ray release of, say, Apocalypse Now, don't expect anything close to that level of quality here.

It looks like the culprits here are digital noise reduction, overcompression and some video edge enhancement. If you compare this transfer to the previous one from the 25th anniversary Blu Ray (see here: https://caps-a-holic.com/c.php?d1=12366&d2=12367&c=4872), it's clear this new transfer trades detail and film grain for a less noisy picture. I think Amazon's 4K HDR bitrate is something in the range of 20-23 Mbps, wihch is better than most others', but still not adequate for 4K. This causes a lot of motion smearing -- when there's little to no movement onscreen, it's reasonably detailed, but the second something moves, the detail level crashes.

The HDR grade is OK, but nothing particularly impressive. It looks like it sticks pretty closely to a normal film range, with occasional instances of things like point lights, sunlight highlights and fire putting out a good bit of brightness. Overall, appropriate for what it is.

Between this and a Blu Ray, it's a push. The video is superior, but not by a huge margin. The audio is inferior to the discs' lossless soundtracks. There are no supplements. Fans of the film would probably want this in addition to the 25th anniversary Blu Ray because of that.

Ultimately, at like $7, this is a no-brainer. If it'd been $20+, it would have felt like a bit of a ripoff. It's just too bad there's no 4K disc, as UHD Blu Ray continues to be in a class of its own.
4 people found this helpful
lily t.Reviewed in the United States on May 26, 2014
5.0 out of 5 stars
Stunning characterizations
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I don't know how normal it is for a woman who wears bows on her shoes to have watched a movie as many times as I have Platoon, but since its premier it has remained one of my favorites.

Setting aside all real life moral and political considerations, and perhaps the veracity of minor details, I find none of the other artistic forays into the Vietnam War as realistic or forceful as Platoon, since unlike the other filmmakers, director Oliver Stone actually served in the war [with distinction ]from 1967-68 with the 25th infantry and then with the First Cavalry. The other reviewers have summarized the plot well, so I'll just add some observations.

The first time I saw it, I was blown away by the visceral impact of the action—not only in the battle sequences, but in terms of actually being incountry. Suffering from lack of sleep, eating crap rations, marching while humping heavy loads in the heat, humidity, rains; dealing with insects and snakes- compounded by the frustration of always being so close to an unseen enemy but often unable to engage him are simply mind boggling. Then of course there was the fear: of the unknown, of booby traps, collateral fire, villagers who may have been innocents or sympathizers—and the terror of being wounded or killed.

The attention to detail, despite some criticism from other reviewers is remarkable. Is all here: the forest, the village and its people, guys jerking off in full view, misdirected friendly fire, the underground tunnels of the Viet Cong, and in one stunning sequence, as the men get ready to walk out into the field at dusk after they get the order to lock and load, a black man raising his voice in an almost spiritual rendition of O Susanna. There are also self inflicted wounds, racism, cruelty, a lieutenant who is unable to lead, ideological schisms about how to win the war or even if the war is worth fighting, along with malice and murder.

What impressed me, and it is rare in American cinema, was to finally see black men portrayed as regular people -not comic relief, kindly helpers, martyrs, victims, criminals or elegant supermen ala Sidney Poitier. The characterizations are stunning in their ordinariness: fast talking black power supporter Junior, young and frightened Francis, bodybuilding party guy Manny, sweet talking Big Hal, heroin addicted Warren, ready to turn a blind eye to moral issues just to survive, – and for me always at the heart of the movie-the wonderful Keith David as the uneducated but incredibly wise and generous King, who, delineating the chasm between black and white, rich and poor, tells the narrator, 'Who ever said we counted for anything? All you have to do is get out of here alive, and the rest of your life will be gravy.'

The white guys are no less wonderfully drawn: pragmatic Rhah, brown nosing O'Neill, easy going surfer Crawford, psychotic Bunny, the completely inept Lieutenant Wolfe, the translator, Lerner, the kindly medic who is appalled by violence, and the young man who narrates the story, Chris, a college kid from a well-to -do family who has volunteered for duty. But make no mistake-these aren't types like we saw in most WWII Hollywood fare—but multifaceted and surprising human beings.

In a sense the story revolves around Chris [ Charlie Sheen] and the two pivotal characters who will influence and define his maturity: the humane, thoughtful and individualistic Sergeant Elias [ Willem Dafoe] and Sergeant Barnes [ Tom Berenger], the brutal realist who effectively runs the platoon and knows what it takes to keep the men alive and functioning as a unit. In the course of the story, Chris will choose his side, though he will also for better or worse incorporate the characteristics of both men.

Berenger and Dafoe give outstanding performances as does Keith David—and I think the then young Charlie Sheen was a wonderful choice for Chris. Not only does he look like a stand in for Oliver Stone but the casting nods to his father, Martin Sheen, who was the lead in Apocalypse Now. And if you are impressed at all with Dafoe, watch Stone's Born on the 4th of July where Dafoe gives one of his greatest performances as the embittered and disabled veteran, Charlie from Chicago.
36 people found this helpful
joel wingReviewed in the United States on March 27, 2021
4.0 out of 5 stars
"We were really fighting ourselves"
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Platoon was Oliver Stone’s opus on the Vietnam War. The opening shows what the story will be about. Charlie Sheen is arriving to Vietnam and as soon as he gets off the plane he sees body bags and soldiers leaving who look like they’ve gone through hell. The movie compares two squads in the same company against each other one led by Willem Dafoe and the other by Tom Berenger. One embraces his men the other uses fear and intimidation. As Sheen says at the end “We were really fighting ourselves”. Like a lot of Vietnam flicks it shows how the U.S. soldiers lost their humanity and didn’t see the Vietnamese as people. There’s plenty of combat as well. It’s definitely one of Stone’s better movies.
2 people found this helpful
AtlantanReviewed in the United States on October 7, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
Price humans pay for war
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Charlie Sheen the boy, grows into a 'man' before our eyes. What a briilant performance. Also William Dafoe and Tom Bergener. Johnny Depp in one single scene. Oliver Stone wrote and directed this movie with that one infamous incident that took place in the village, which lot of reviewers have problem with, has been toned down really really low from the actual thing that happened and people still have issues with the scene. The movie is less about Nam and more about what war does to men. In my opinion it is not a political film at all.
4 people found this helpful
Steve BenedictReviewed in the United States on November 23, 2020
3.0 out of 5 stars
Certainly a well-made movie
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I was in Vietnam (1969-1970). Obviously, I can't speak to the whole country, nor every Army unit, but I did not see drug dens. I have heard somebody who was in Oliver Stone's unit, and knew him: he said that there was no time for some of the things shown in the movie.

Other than that, the film was well acted and well done.
3 people found this helpful
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