Full Metal Jacket

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Full Metal Jacket (1987)

Full Metal Jacket is the 1987 Vietnam War film directed by Stanley Kubrick (Paths of Glory) that follows a Marine reporter nicknamed Joker (Matthew Modine) through his initiation into Marine boot camp up until his involvement in the Battle of Hue during the 1968 Tet Offensive. With a screenplay adapted from Gustav Hasford's novel "The Short-Timers", the film provided breakthrough acting roles for R. Lee Ermey and Vincent D'Onofrio. At the time of its premiere, the film was part of a wave of Vietnam War-related theatrical releases, and was unfairly compared to Oliver Stone's Platoon (which was released just over six months prior to this film).

The following weapons were used in the film Full Metal Jacket:




M14 Rifle

The M14 rifle features prominently in the U.S. Marine boot camp scenes in the film. Once the Marines arrive in Vietnam they are issued M16s. The M14 rifle is locked and loaded with 7.62x51mm NATO rounds when Pvt. Leonard "Gomer Pyle" Lawrence (Vincent D'Onofrio) is confronted by Joker and Gunnery Sgt. Hartman (R. Lee Ermey) in the "head". When Joker asks if the rounds were live, Pyle responds, "Seven-Six-Two millimeter, Full Metal Jacket".

M14 rifle - 7.62x51mm NATO
"There are many like it, but this one is mine." Pvt. Pyle (Vincent D'Onofrio) with his M14 along with the rest of the boots recite the Rifleman's creed as a prayer before bed.
"This is my rifle, this is my gun! This is for fightin', this is for fun!" Gunnery Sgt. Hartman marches with the men.
Pvt. Leonard "Gomer Pyle" Lawrence (Vincent D'Onofrio) fires the M14 on the range and shoots the most accurate.

USAF M16 (Colt Model 604)

The M16 Rifle appears in the film as the standard-issue weapon of most of the US Marines in Vietnam. Since the film takes place during the Tet offensive in 1968, the use of M16s is correct since it was adopted by the USMC in 1967. However, the rifle adopted by the USMC was the M16A1 whereas the rifle featured in the film is a Colt Model 604, which was the version of the M16 adopted by the US Air Force which lacked a forward assist and had the partial magazine fence of the XM16E1. Cowboy (Arliss Howard) has his M16 with two magazines taped together "jungle style", a practice that originated during World War II for the Thompson that was carried over to the M16 during Vietnam. During his encounter with the VC sniper, Pvt. Joker's rifle jams on him, something early M16's were notorious for due to poor maintenance habits and faulty ammunition.

"USAF" M16 (Colt Model 604) - 5.56x45mm
Crazy Earl (Kieron Jecchinis) holds his M16 after shooting some NVA.
Cowboy (Arliss Howard) fires his M16 at the NVA sniper. Note the mags taped "jungle style".
Rafterman (Kevyn Major Howard) unloads his M16 Rifle.
Ducking the snipers' fire, Pvt. Joker (Matthew Modine) lets go of his M16 Rifle and lets it fall to the ground, after it jams on him.

MGC Replica M16 rifle

In the scenes where blank-firing weapons were not needed, the Marines are seen carrying MGC M16 Replica rifles.

The MGC M16 Assault rifle: a non firing metal replica built by the Model Gun Corp of Japan and one of the most used non firing replicas of the M16 in movies and television.
Cowboy (Arliss Howard) holds the replica MGC M16. Note the fake forward assist indicating that this is the replica.
Joker (Matthew Modine) holding a Model Gun Corp MGC M16 as he walks a column.
Crazy Earl is carrying an MGC M16 replica rifle.

SA Vz.58

The VC sniper (Ngoc Le) that engages the Marines is armed with a Czech-made SA Vz.58. It should be also noted that the Sa vz 58 series rifles were commonly used by the Việt Cộng and the North Vietnamese Army alongside the more predominant AK-47 and SKS rifles; all used the Soviet 7.62x39mm round.

SA Vz.58 - 7.62x39mm
An NVA soldier runs through the flames with an SA Vz.58 during the Tet Offensive
The VC sniper (Ngoc Le) with her SA Vz.58.
The VC sniper (Ngoc Le) lines up her SA Vz.58 on Eightball (Dorian Harewood).

Machine Guns


The Doorgunner (Tim Colceri) on the Westland Wessex helicopter (standing in for an H-34 Choctaw) that takes Joker (Matthew Modine) and Rafterman (Kevyn Major Howard) to join Pvt. Cowboy's (Arliss Howard) 1st Platoon repeatedly fires an M60 machine gun at random Vietnamese they pass. The M60 is also the weapon Animal Mother (Adam Baldwin) carries throughout the film. Pvt. Joker can also be seen firing an M60 when their base is attacked at the start of the Tet Offensive.

M60 GPMG - 7.62x51mm NATO
The Doorgunner (Tim Colceri) with his M60 machine gun.
Animal Mother (Adam Baldwin) hugs the dirt and his M60.
Joker holds the M60 as the Marines prepare for the NVA assault on the base.
"Better you than me." Animal Mother (Adam Baldwin) shoulders his M60 while looking over the dead Marines.
Animal Mother lays down fire with the M60.
Animal Mother charges into the city blazing away with the M60.
Animal Mother fires the M60.

Browning M2HB Heavy Machine Gun

Several Browning M2HB heavy machine guns mounted on M41A Walker Bulldog tanks are seen firing in the background of several scenes.

Browning M2HB .50 BMG in vehicle mounting
A .50 cal Browning M2HB is seen mounted on the M41A Walker Bulldog tank.
A .50 cal Browning M2HB is seen mounted on the M41A Walker Bulldog tanks as they enter Hue.
An M2HB is glimpsed behind Animal Mother.



Pvt. Joker draws his M1911A1 pistol after his M16 rifle jams on him.

M1911A1 - .45 ACP
Pvt. Joker (Matthew Modine) with his M1911 drawn.



We briefly see a U.S. Marine firing a 66mm M72 LAW at the VC Sniper's (Ngoc Le) position.

M72A2 LAW - 66mm
A U.S. Marine firing an M72 LAW.


The M79 grenade launcher is mainly carried by T.H.E. Rock (Sal Lopez) in the film.

M79 grenade launcher - 40mm
T.H.E. Rock (Sal Lopez) hits the dirt carrying the M79.
T.H.E. Rock (Sal Lopez) fires his 40mm M79 grenade launcher during the Battle of Hue.
T.H.E. Rock firing his M79.

M26 Hand Grenade

M26 hand grenades are seen several times on the flak vests of various Marines in Hue.

M26 "Lemon" hand grenade.
Joker gets a dressing-down from a Marine Colonel, a pair of M26 hand grenades visible on his vest above his camera

M67 Hand Grenade

Several Marines carry M67 hand grenades on their flak vests as well. An interesting note about this is that during the late-1960's (when the events of the film take place), the M67 was just starting to see use among frontline US military units, and beginning to phase out older designs such as the M26 hand grenade mentioned above.

M67 High-Explosive Fragmentation grenade
Lt. Touchdown (Ed O'Ross) has an M67 grenade on his vest.

Daisy Red Ryder BB gun

Crazy Earl carries a lever-action Daisy Red Ryder BB gun in addition to his M-16 throughout the movie, as carried by his character in the book on which the film is based, The Short Timers.

Daisy Red Ryder BB gun
The stock of Daisy Red Ryder BB gun is seen sticking out of Crazy Earl's pack. Crazy Earl is carrying an MGC M16 replica rifle.
Daisy Red Ryder BB gun is seen on the right on the ground next to Crazy Earl.

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