Platoon is about what it means to be a grunt in the Vietnam War. A masterpiece by Oliver Stone, and definitively the best Vietnam War movie ever made.
The good. This is one of those movie you could list everything here. I'll limit myself to what makes it truly special. An incredible score that leaves an indelible mark. Extremely strong psychology built into the scenario and the characters. You get right there with them, you feel the heat, the ants, the numbness... Perfect realism for the firefights, the ambushes, the battles, the camps, the duality, the interactions, and the dialogs. Superb acting.
The actors. At the time Tom Berenger and Willem Dafoe were big names and you can see why by the quality of their work in this piece. However, the real star here is Charlie Sheen for his portrayal of a and ex college boy and disillusioned volunteer. An other great performance, often underrated, is the one by John C. McGinley as the stringy sergeant O'Neil. This production also feature people that would eventually become much bigger in the industry, namely Forest Whitaker, Keith David and a very young Johnny Depp.
The bad. Nothing.
The ugly. Nothing.
The result. Not for the faint of heart, highly recommended for everyone else. A must for those who want to understand the horrors of war.