Oliver Stone's Platoon is the most sobering Vietnam War epic ever made. It is an unqualified triumph for its honesty, its artistry, its brutality and its frank portrayal of a nation - our nation - divided by ideology, poverty, racism and drugs. [25 Jan 1987, p.1E]
Of all the movies inspired by the Vietnam War this is one of the most compelling. From the point of view of a young recruit, he revealed that the worst enemy was not only in the trench, but also in the mirror. The movie that it put director Oliver Stone in the spotlight.
Platoon is a triumph for Oliver Stone, a film in which a visceral approach to violence, which has always set him apart, is balanced by classical symmetries and a kind of elegiac distance. This is not the Vietnam of op-ed writers, rabble-rousers or esthetic visionaries, not Vietnam-as-metaphor or Vietnam-the-way-it-should-have-been. It is a movie about Vietnam as it was, alive with authenticity, seen through the eyes of a master filmmaker who lost his innocence there.
With craft, crackle, a little bombast and plenty of residual rage, he has created a time-capsule movie that explodes like a frag bomb in the consciousness of America, showing how it was back then, over there.
A touch too heavy on the Faust scenario, this is nevertheless a typically powerful effort from Stone especially strong on the nightmarish aspects of the war, as when a simple misundertsanding instantly becomes a massacre...Gripping stuff
Another brutal and hellish war depiction, I really enjoyed all the characters, honestly Sheen's was probably the worst or least interesting of the bunch. The voice over work and dialogue was so bad, and was completely unnecessary.
"Platoon" delivers its share of brutality and morality during the non-sensical war in Vietnam. However, despite the good performances and sincere direction by Stone, by the end of the film, nothing has remotely left an impact in my mind about it. In a sea of war pictures that all vary in explaining and showing the understanding of such awful violence and yes, sometimes decisions, "Platoon" came across as just another war movie. For movie-goers and war historians, take it for what its worth as I've personally seen more inspiring works which deal with the consequences of war.