This is John Milius. Writer, director and NRA member, Milius is bringing his vision to video gaming next month with Homefront.
During the late ’60s and ’70s, Milius and his buddies George Lucas and Francis Ford Coppola left their mark on the film industry. Lucas detoured, diverting attention on his Star Wars universe and the subsequent marketing opportunities, while Coppola seemed to be lost in the wilderness throughout the following decades, working on movies that ranged from brilliant (Rumble Fish) to less-so (Jack).
But, Milius remained more or less constant, with his military swagger, love of guns, Americana and history. As this Los Angeles Times piece from 2001 explains, it’s Hollywood that changed.
Milius is responsible for the “Go ahead, make my day” and “Do I feel lucky?” bits from Dirty Harry as well as “I love the smell of napalm in the morning” line from Apocalypse Now. While Coppola re-wrote much of Milius’ script on set, his mark is still evident, whether it be the music cues Milius wrote like Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries” or the “Charlie don’t surf” line.
Originally, the plan was to have Lucas direct Apocalypse Now. Milius even apparently wanted to shoot the film on 16mm while the Vietnam War was still raging on. Coppola was later brought on and able to get the film made after his success with The Godfather movies.
With credits ranging from Red Dawn to Rome, Milius doesn’t think much of the younger generation of screenwriters, telling CNN that they’re “broken writers” with “no shame” and that their scripts are “garbage”.
There’s no shame in the world, and without shame, you cannot have honour,” he adds. “Our world is ruled by consensus now. There is no sense of honour.”
Perhaps, Milius is finding more consensus in gaming. Homefront is not his first game title. He was previously involved in 2005’s Medal of Honor: European Assault, creating the game’s story.
Hollywood’s changed, the world’s changed, but there’s something to be said about John Milius continuing to be John Milius. Homefront, which he wrote, looks to be one of this year’s most intriguing game titles. And while the movie business might have passed him by, gaming has not.
Here is a look back at some of his cinematic highlights.