Thursday, June 20, 2013

#tbt Apocalypse Now review

Marlon Brando at his finest (and fattest).
Apocalypse Now is a film many consider to be a true classic. Yet regretfully, I hadn't seen it until about last Saturday. I sure was missing out. Apocalypse Now, like many films such as The Godfather and Raging Bull, deserved and earned it's status as a classic. It has a great director, a terrific cast, some very cool and very trippy camerawork, and a great script based on a (supposedly great) epic poem. The reason I'm saying Heart of Darkness, which Apocalypse Now is based on, is supposedly good is because I haven't read it, yet. The plot of the movie is an army captain named Benjamin Willard is asked to take on a mission to journey up a river in Cambodia and terminate the insane Col. Walter Kurtz with extreme prejudice. Even though this film has a fairly straight forward plot, it has a lot of deep meaning and acid-trip like direction. Francis Ford Coppola does a really great job directing here. He really captures the horror of Vietnam through the eyes of a scared army Captain. But he also added a hallucinatory layer to it, which really gave it an eerie and interesting feel. This film is proof Coppola was one of America's best directors. although his work has dropped off a bit recently. When I started watching the film, I honestly was a little bored. I was worried this was going to be one of those long, boring, and pretentious films that are hailed as great yet, are close to impossible to get through (I'm looking at you, Lincoln). Apocalypse Now was anything but that. It was incredibly interesting and deep, visually mind-blowing, with some ass-kicking performances. The whole movie effectively shows Willard's pride and confidence turn to doubt and fear. As it does show Kurtz pure madness and his followers blind worship. Another awesome thing about this film is how impossibly hard it was to get made, and how it was done so well with so many problems. Coppola's problems with Apocalypse Now are so famous a whole documentary was made about it. The poor guy had to deal with money problems, fires, and Marlon Brando. Along with all the crap that happened, Brando showed up to the movie set completely overweight and unhelpful. Mr.Coppola only made about a million bucks originally from the film! Luckily, it was well received and showered with award recognition. Robert Duvall is a great actor. He's been in some great flicks like The Godfather and Sling Blade. Yet, even though he got an Oscar nomination for his role here, I thought his performance was just okay and he was only in a little bit of the film! Marlon Brando is also a terrific actor. His performance as Col. Kurtz in this film is absolutely fantastic, but he's also only in the movie for a short time. Martin Sheen is a decent actor most of the time. Watching his performance here I can safely say that it is his best. He really missed out on an Oscar nod for his portrayal of Capt. Willard. Overall, Apocalypse Now is a great film with some of the best directing I've ever seen. i truly do recommend it. Happy Throwback Thursday, and as always, Happy Viewing. You can follow me on Twitter @WhitsMovies and like me on Facebook at

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