The Electric

What's On

Cinematic Time Machine: Full Metal Jacket - 30th Anniversary

Sunday 17th September


Screen 1

Director: Stanley Kubrick

Starring: Matthew Modine

Rating: 15

USA 1987, 116mins

The screening will be preceded by an introduction from B Film academic Michelle Devereaux.

Stanley Kubrick's take on the Vietnam War follows smart-aleck Private Davis (Matthew Modine), quickly christened 'Joker' by his foul-mouthed drill sergeant (R. Lee Ermey), and pudgy Private Lawrence (Vincent D'Onofrio), nicknamed 'Gomer Pyle' as they endure the rigors of basic training. Though Pyle takes a frightening detour, Joker graduates to the Marine Corps and is sent to Vietnam as a journalist, covering - and eventually participating in - the bloody Battle of Hué.

The film's battle sequences - filmed rather bizarrely, in London's Docklands before its redevelopment - are hugely realistic and are perhaps the key moments of the movie, heightening the disorientation and fear felt by the soldiers. By offering no more than a snapshot of the Vietnam conflict (the action deals with one individual skirmish), Kubrick cleverly leaves any judgement on the war to the audience, although clearly attempting to influence them.