New York City teenager Eugene Jerome starts military service thoughtfully yet patriotically prepared to take part in World War II. At boot camp in Biloxi, Mississippi, he faces the brutally opposed views of other recruits, which he must live with. Still they must bind, if not bond, facing the sadistic drill sergeant during their physically ruthless and mentally abusive training, which is heading for tragedy. Meanwhile, their boyish minds wander often to sexual frustrations, from obsession with potency (and escaping virginity) to prejudice against gays. Armed only with his sense of humor, Eugene is determined to leave camp with everything he came with.Written by
Broderick had just completed this film when on a driving vacation in Northern Ireland with then girlfriend Jennifer Grey, they were involved in a head-on collision in which a mother and daughter in the other car died. See more »
In the dance sequence with Eugene and Daisy during "How High the Moon" as they slowly dance in circles, you can see the shadow of the entire crew, camera and boom against the back wall with each rotation! See more »
I always thought 1988 was one of the best years at the cinema (together with 1984, 1990/1991 and 2000).
I've seen this movie several times before, but not in a very long time. It's just as good as I remembered, perhaps even more. Excellent semi- autobiography comedy/drama about recruits in boot camp during WWII. Excellent writing by Neil Simon based on his play. Excellent cast - Matthew Broderick, Christopher Walken and many unknown others, all perfect in their roles, even the supporting cast in tiny roles (the girl playing the hooker and Penelope Ann Miller who is damn cute). Good production and good direction by Mike Nichols.
Like GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS, this is a great example of taking a play and making it into a GOOD cinematic presentation. The writing has a perfect combination of comedy and drama and all the characters are well defined and interesting - not like in many others movies in which the supporting characters blend with each other.
I just realized that the play and the Eugene Morris Jerome character are part of a semi-biography trilogy by Neil Simon. Corey Parker, who plays Arnold Epstein "the intellectual Jew" to perfection, also played Eugene (Matthew Broderick's character) in a later TV production, Broadway BOUND (1992) with Jonathan Silverman who himself played Eugene in BRIGHTON BEACH MEMOIRS (1986). And to close the loop, Matthew Broderick played in BRIGHTON BEACH MEMOIRS on Broadway.
I give 7.5/10 for the first half and 7/10 for the second half.
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