“Apocalypse Now” Review ✦✦✦✦✦

28 January, 2017

Year of Release: 1979
Francis Ford Coppola
Francis Ford Coppola, John Milius
Director of Photography: 
Vittorio Storaro
Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall

Synopsis: Set during the horrors of the Vietnam War, “Apocalypse Now” recounts the story of a soldier dragged back into action on a mission to track down a military hero who has set-up camp in the heart of the Cambodian jungle.

Apocalypse Now Review:

A chilling nightmare birthed from the blood of a gruelling movie shoot, “Apocalypse Now” is a film with sweat dripping from its brow as nausea, disorientation, and lunacy spiral out of control in a story that translates many truths about the horrors of war into a simple, linear journey upstream, with each set piece adding to Francis Ford Coppola’s heavy message about the subjectivity of savagery and madness.

It’s through the eyes of the already damaged Captain Willard that we are exposed to the irreversible effects of being thrown into all-out war. He’s a soldier who’s become institutionalized and, like a prisoner who has forgotten how to function in the outside world, he craves the jungle as much as he detests it. There are a number of ways that “Apocalypse Now” hints at this predicament through its subtext; from the pangs of sadness behind Colonel Kilgore’s voice when he acknowledges that someday the war will end to Colonel Kurtz’s willingness to be assassinated rather than leave his Cambodian tribe.

“Apocalypse Now” is a gloriously psychotic story about transformation and mania, showing us that no one is who they are on paper and that the medals do not reflect the man. With all normality and morality forsaken the film’s status quo becomes perverse and abhorrent, allowing soldiers to pump dead bodies with bullets and peasants to be killed over a translation issue. Nothing can match the way that Marlon Brando’s voice oozes like warm treacle or the eerie presence of Jim Morrison singing a now iconic track as the film reaches an operatic crescendo while swilling in the filth of hell on earth.


Review Date
Apocalypse Now