The Thin Red Line is a 1998 war movie which tells the story of United States forces during the Battle of Guadalcanal. It stars Sean Penn, Adrien Brody, James Caviezel, Ben Chaplin, George Clooney, John Cusack, Woody Harrelson, Elias Koteas, Jared Leto, Dash Mihok, Tim Blake Nelson, Nick Nolte, John C. Reilly, Larry Romano and John Savage.
The movie was adapted by Terrence Malick from the James Jones novel. It was directed by Malick.
It was nominated for Academy Awards for Best Cinematography, Best Director, Best Film Editing, Best Music, Original Dramatic Score, Best Picture, Best Sound and Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium.
There is a great deal of voice-over narration in this film. Billy Bob Thornton recorded three hours of narration, but none of it made it to the final cut.
The movie explores the behavior of ordinary men in war, 'cowboy' officers chasing medals and the pain of separation from loved ones. Although featuring several intense and realistic action scenes, the movie is in essence a long poem on war, or rather anti-war, although the message is subtle and poetic.
The Thin Red Line had previously been produced in 1964.