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Jarhead (2005)

R  |   |  Drama, War  |  4 November 2005 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 134,828 users   Metascore: 58/100
Reviews: 655 user | 258 critic | 40 from

Based on former Marine Anthony Swofford's best-selling 2003 book about his pre-Desert Storm experiences in Saudi Arabia and about his experiences fighting in Kuwait.



(screenplay) (as William D. Broyles Jr.) , (book)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Riad Galayini ...
Craig Coyne ...


Anthony "Swoff" Swofford, a Camus-reading kid from Sacramento, enlists in the Marines in the late 1980s. He malingers during boot camp, but makes it through as a sniper, paired with the usually-reliable Troy. The Gulf War breaks out, and his unit goes to Saudi Arabia for Desert Shield. After 175 days of boredom, adrenaline, heat, worry about his girlfriend finding someone else, losing it and nearly killing a mate, demotion, latrine cleaning, faulty gas masks, and desert football, Desert Storm begins. In less than five days, it's over, but not before Swoff sees burned bodies, flaming oil derricks, an oil-drenched horse, and maybe a chance at killing. Where does all the testosterone go? Written by <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Every man fights his own war. See more »


Drama | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive language, some violent images and strong sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




| | |

Release Date:

4 November 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Soldado anónimo  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$70,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$27,726,210 (USA) (4 November 2005)


$2,340,121 (Australia) (24 February 2006)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film cast includes two Oscar winners: Chris Cooper and Jamie Foxx; and one Oscar nominee: Jake Gyllenhaal. See more »


After Troy is branded, Swofford leans in and tells him, "You earned it, man!" This does not match up to his lip movement. See more »


[first lines]
Anthony 'Swoff' Swofford: A story: A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands, love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper; his hands remember the rifle.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The title of the movie is the only opening credit at the beginning of the movie. See more »


Referenced in At the Movies: Summer Special 2008/09 (2008) See more »


Jesus Walks
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Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
Contains a sample of "Walk with Me"
Performed by The Arc Choir
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Full Metal Witch Project
27 October 2005 | by (Los Angeles, CA) – See all my reviews

Just saw an advanced screening of this tonight. While it isn't the film that has been so brilliantly advertised, it's a very solid film. It feels a lot like "Full Metal Jacket" early on, but with more humor. Then, it becomes an entirely new animal. More of a psychological study. I would actually call this the "Blair Witch Project" of war films in that you (and the characters) know the Boogeyman's "out there," you're just waiting for him to strike. And the longer you wait, the more stir-crazy you become within your own mind.

The acting is superb and the cinematography is stellar. It's an anti-war film without being distinctly liberal about it. It's a true story, and for the most part, Mendes tells it like it is. So, you can make your own judgment about it. But based off what you see, and all that happens, you have no choice but see the absurdity, not only in war, but perhaps in some of the USMC's tactics as well. It's heartbreaking to see what an experience like this can do to young men.

If you're looking for action, this is not the film you're looking for. No heroism, judgments, insight, or hope. Just the documentation and reflection of build up, the destruction of lives, psychological torment, boredom, camaraderie, and...waiting.

211 of 311 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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