YMMV / Platoon

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: It can be argued that Barnes did care for the men in his command, but used extreme tactics to do so. All he wanted was for them all to survive, and to hell with anybody else.
  • Anvilicious: Just in case we didn't get the subtle subtext involved in Stone placing an evil sergeant and a good sergeant in charge of plastic-faced Charlie Sheen's raw recruit as the devil and angel on his shoulder, Stone has Sheen provide a wildly anvilicious voiceover monologue at the end of the movie. "I felt like a child born of these two fathers fighting over my soul." Alternatively counts as Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped.
  • Awesome Music: Adagio for Strings, used during and after the more intense moments in the film.
    • The unused Georges Delerue-composed soundtrack, which gets replaced by Adagio for Strings.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: The fat soldier in the Final Battle who appears for a few seconds before dying.
  • Complete Monster: There are two Sociopathic Soldiers:
    • SSgt. Bob Barnes. In one scene, believing that some villagers are aiding Viet Cong soldiers, he shoots a defiant woman (the village chief's wife) in the head. When the murdered woman's daughter cries out, Barnes takes the child at gunpoint, threatening to shoot her next if the villagers do not reveal the whereabouts of the Viet Cong. Worse yet, during a firefight with the enemy, he murders Sgt. Elias, the only one with the balls to do something about the man's rapidly-mounting atrocities.
    • Bunny is a sadistic little psychopath who beats a crippled Vietnamese boy to death just for fun, and does the same to the victim's elderly mother, before leading the gang-rape of a young girl in the bushes, which is interrupted by Chris.
    Bunny: You know, Junior, some of the things we done, man, I don't feel like we done something wrong.
  • Epileptic Trees/Everyone Is Jesus in Purgatory: Some have interpreted the Elias-like guy who asks Taylor for a light from a Deleted Scene as Death himself.
  • Faux Symbolism:
    • The snakes Chris keeps seeing.
    • Chris Taylor. One of the soldiers even makes a joke about him dying and being resurrected.
  • Memetic Mutation: The Crucified Hero Shot is parodied to death in Pixiv.
  • Moral Event Horizon: The village scene, to the point of Nightmare Fuel. The only ones who come out of this scene with audience sympathies entirely intact are Chris, Elias, and the few men the latter took offscreen with him, including King.
    • Barnes crosses it firmly by shooting the village chief's unarmed wife and taking their child hostage.
    • Bunny sails right over the line by beating a mentally handicapped boy to death, despite orders to leave, and then doing the same to the boy's mother. He, and the group of soldiers he takes with him to do the deed, promptly rockets magnitudes further by gang-raping a teenage village girl.
    • The rest of the platoon are also left in murky territory after they shoot the village animals for fun.
  • Narm:
    • Even though the film's usage of Adagio for Strings is effective, it was used rather inappropriately just before Lerner gets wounded, where it is abruptly cut by gunfire.
    • The face Junior makes when he gets bayoneted to death.
  • Nightmare Fuel: The village scene. Also the deleted scene where Taylor has a dream where the platoon stands in front of a Buddha statue. One by one the soldiers disappear until there's only Barnes.
    • Barnes himself is made of Nightmare Fuel. His overall appearance is unnerving and those facial scars are the stuff of nightmares. His actions in the film make him more terrifying then the Vietcong.
  • Signature Scene: See Dying Moment of Awesome.
  • True Art Is Angsty: Edged out just barely by Apocalypse Now.