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
Despite winning a Tony Award, the Drama Desk Award, and the Theatre World Award as best supporting actor for playing Epstein, Barry Miller did not get the film role. The role went to Corey Parker. See more »
During the "last thing before you die" wager, Sgt Toomey yells at the troops that Retreat (the song playing) means lights out. Actually, Retreat is played at 5:00 PM during the daily securing of the flag. Taps is the song that's played at 9:00 PM, signaling the end of the day. See more »
Eugene Morris Jerome:
[mocking Sgt. Toomey in the mess hall]
You have a good meal now, you hear.
[to the guys at the table]
Eugene Morris Jerome:
. I've got to make you men strong. Because tonight, we're going to march the platoon off a 3,000 foot cliff. Dying makes a man out of you. I died in the war, they cremated me. And they buried the ashes, right here in my skull.
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This is a fantastic movie that you will want to watch again and again. The story is perfect, the cast is perfect and the acting is perfect. A coming of age story that combines young recruits from all different sections of life that have come together and now have to learn how to live with one another as they go through the rigors of boot camp. Neil Simon always knows how to combine that perfect blend of realism, a comic touch and something you can identify with into everything he writes and makes you feel so comfortable in his story because you feel you're in the story. He makes you want to be become a writer. This is what makes Neil Simon unique. If only every movie could be written this well. This is what great Hollywood film-making is all about.
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