Films featuring
Vincent D'Onofrio

Men in Black

Did anything about that seem odd to you?

The success of this movie, creatively as much as commercially, is down to a triumph of casting. Of course, they had Will Smith, fresh off his breakthrough role in Independence Day, but that coup carries some hazards. Smith’s high-energy presence can dominate and unbalance a movie if allowed, requiring an actor of equal weight and with a complementary presence to even the scales. Thus, pairing Smith with the deadpan Tommy Lee Jones is half the key to the success of Men in Black.

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Full Metal Jacket

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Full Metal Jacket is an outstanding film about Marine recruits in training followed by two less successful films about the Vietnam War. It begins so strong with the natural conflict between the slow-witted and unhinged Private Pyle (Vincent D’Onofrio) and the profane force of nature known as Gunnery Sergeant Hartman (R. Lee Ermey, a former Marine drill instructor himself) that the two following segments border on anti-climax.

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JFK

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Oliver Stone‘s JFK is a movie as admirable in its technique as it is troubling in its agenda. Much like Birth of a Nation sought to rewrite the early history of the original Ku Klux Klan, JFK represents a concerted effort on Stone’s part to insert certifiable falsehoods into the historical record of the Kennedy assassination. He gets two basic facts correct. John F. Kennedy was indeed assassinated on November 22, 1963 and New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison did actually prosecute businessman Clay Shaw for his role in an alleged conspiracy. After that, the facts and Mr. Stone have a strained relationship at best. I sincerely hope that this movie will be as routinely dismissed by future generations as Birth of a Nation is today.

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