I think this movie is antiwar. There were too many scenes of guys breaking down, or innocent people being killed (women and children) to show a positive side to the war. Not to mention the fact of how crazy everyone was acting. Although it was funny to see the guys surfing in the middle of a war zone, it really does come off as insane. It makes it seem like the war is turning soldiers into mental cases.
Charlie Sheen was narrating and he talked about how everyone was trying to make the war feel like home: talk about surfing, having a barbecue, etc. But he said that he had been back and it’s not home anymore. This is really sad and antiwar; if you notice all the guys come from different places, different lives. It’s obvious that a lot of them were drafted and each guy seems to be obsessed with where he came from, whether it was the Hawaiian surf, or New Orleans food; as if talking about it would bring them home sooner.
I think this film does a good job of showing the emotional side of the war. Men crying for various reasons, the way they acted when the playboy bunnies came for a show, and soldiers were smoking a joint when they could get a chance. These are all things that took place in the war that the general public probably heard or knew about. The thing that struck me to be the most surprising was when they were getting off of the ship in the middle of fire, there is a camera crew sitting there and a director telling everyone not to look at the camera and to act natural that it was for T.V. I knew that they put live footage of the war on T.V. back home, but seeing that scene really hit home.
I think a big reason why this movie showed a good job of what Vietnam was like on more that one level was Willard’s narration throughout the whole movie. Before we were used to just seeing war acted out. This time we actually get to get inside of a soldier's mind, which is a honest as you can get.