Study Guide

Platoon Scene 12

Scene 12

Scene 12

  • In an aerial view of the men walking across the river, we can tell that it's sunny, but drizzling.
  • "Adagio for Strings" is playing again.
  • Taylor narrates. He's struggling to keep his sanity. He doesn't know right from wrong anymore, morale is low, and there's a civil war in the platoon.
  • Half of the men are with Barnes, the other half with Elias. Taylor can't believe it: they're fighting each other instead of the enemy.
  • A man lifts up some wet brush in the rain: it's a tunnel entrance. The man sticks his gun in briefly, before the camera moves up and shows us that it's Elias.
  • The men are milling around until Wolfe orders them all to move out. The guys are walking through the forest. It's quiet.
  • Suddenly, fire erupts from a bunker nearby. Lerner is hit. So is Sergeant Warren.
  • It's an ambush. The men take cover wherever they can and return fire. Things are blowing up right and left.
  • Taylor fires some shoots, and then crawls towards a wounded comrade.
  • Barnes comes stalking towards the front of what was the line, yelling about something.
  • Wolfe is calling in coordinates for an artillery strike. Elias comes running over to him to tell him that the artillery strike will kill the men.
  • He's spotted a clearing nearby and can do some damage to the enemy flank but he needs a few guys.
  • Wolfe isn't buying it. Barnes shows up. Elias tells them both that the enemy has them in a crossfire.
  • Unless he's given 3 men and allowed to try his plan, they'll get shot to pieces. Barnes okays the plan.
  • Elias and Barnes trade insults (Barnes interprets something Elias says as him telling Barnes how to "run" his war).
  • Meanwhile, Taylor is shooting at an enemy soldier in a foxhole. During a pause in the shooting, he throws a grenade into the foxhole, killing the enemy.
  • He makes his way over to a wounded Lerner.
  • Artillery shells start coming in, dangerously close to the guys. Elias was right.
  • The guys notice and Big Harold screams out "short rounds" before fleeing. In his flight, he sets off a booby trap and is severely injured.
  • Another guy takes shrapnel from the artillery shell. Barnes races to him and removes as much shrapnel as he can.
  • The camera then shifts back to Taylor, who's carrying Lerner on his back and screaming for a medic.
  • He brings Lerner to a space a ways back from the main fighting. Other wounded soldiers are there.
  • Taylor comforts Lerner, before being asked to join Elias on his mission.
  • Elias, Taylor, Crawford, and Rhah race into the jungle. Elias tells them what to do, and where to watch for the enemy, before taking off to hit the enemy from a different angle 100 meters away.
  • Meanwhile, Barnes stalks over to where Wolfe is on the radio. He takes the headset, and hits Wolfe with it before calling him out on his idiotic artillery mission.
  • He then orders the rest of the guys to fall back. He says he will go and find Elias.
  • The guys are watching the jungle, silently. Soon, a group of 10-15 enemy soldiers emerge.
  • Taylor, Crawford, and Rhah open fire, and the enemy retreats. Crawford is hit. While Taylor and Rhah are attending to him, Barnes shows up.
  • He orders them back to the rear, and he says he will go and get Elias. Taylor, Crawford, and Rhah depart.
  • Elias is running around in the jungle. The enemy is all around, but unseeable.
  • Eventually, Elias comes nearly face to face with them. He shoots two dead and keeps running.
  • Barnes is out there, too, and trying to locate the source of the gunshots he's just heard.
  • Elias is still running. So is Barnes, and so are the enemy troops.
  • Taylor and Rhah have got Crawford back to the rear. After dropping him off, Taylor heads out again.
  • Barnes quietly walks through the forest. He can sense something and pauses. He aims his rifle and waits.
  • Elias comes into view. They stare at each other, and Barnes momentarily pauses, pulling his head up.
  • Elias, at first confused, smiles when he realizes it's Barnes. Then Barnes aims his gun again. The camera shows us a close-up of both mens' eyes.
  • Suddenly, Barnes shoots Elias several times, and Elias collapses. Barnes has just "fragged" Elias.
  • Taylor is racing through the forest. Suddenly, he runs into Barnes, who tells him to head back. Elias is dead.
  • Taylor can't believe it. He seems like he wants more details, but Barnes tells him to get going. There's "gooks" all over the place.
  • Something is fishy here, and Taylor's face says it all. He reflects for a minute as the scene ends.

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