Regardless of what anybody else might say, there's no getting away from the fact that Platoon is the finest and most haunting portrayal of the Vietnam war ever committed to celluloid. Inspired by writer/director Stone's own tour of duty during the war, the film is presented to us through the eyes of Chris Taylor (Charlie Sheen), a naïve middle class American youth who quickly discovers that the greatest enemy to emerge out of the horror of Vietnam is not the Vietcong, but those soldiers who allow their dark sides to be fully expressed. As Stone conveys so effectively, the consequences are hideous.
Action thrills are combined with a real statement about what these young men went through due to the policies of the US government (can you spot a common theme in Stone's movies here?). This is an incredibly rewarding and affecting piece of cinema.
The film is best summed up by actor John C. McGinley in the documentary which also features on the disc: he describes Platoon as being 'a love film about young boys dying in war.'