Apocalypse Now Review Essay Research Paper Vietnam

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Apocalypse Now Review Essay, Research Paper Vietnam was a war fought by the unwillingly, for the ungrateful, led by the unqualified. Apocalypse Now is Coppola?s film based on Heart of Darkness, but set in the Vietnam jungle. The major theme in the novel is the examination of America?s involvement, militarily, in Vietnam. However, like Conrad?s novel, it also shows the potential inherent darkness in all human hearts. Coppola retains the basic structure of Conrad?s novel for his film. As Marlow, in Heart of Darkness, travels up the Congo eventually to find Kurtz, similarly, Captain Willard the protagonist in Coppola?s film travels up the Nung River to meet his Kurtz. Both the Company and the Army want their Kurtzes dead. Kurtz exposes his superior?s real motives and methods and

the Army does not want the truth to be known. Willard becomes more perceptive to the moral darkness around him: this causes him to question his real purpose, or goal in what he is doing. Eventually, after killing Kurtz, Willard realizes the Darkness that can be brought out in any man, examined through Kurtz, if society allows amoral values to thrive. The message in Apocalypse Now is the same message in Heart of Darkness, which is that any man can succumb to his savage desires, he just needs the right environment to allow his temptations to be nurtured and bloom. Apocalypse Now was based on events that had deep meaning and significance for its director. Coppola had just witnessed his generation and the still younger generation fight this bloody conflict nobody wanted to be apart

of. He must have seen the wounded and maimed war vets their physical scars obvious, who came to represent the lost generation. Politics at the time forced the Vietnam War upon the American people: men like Kennedy, LBJ, and Nixon were all guilty of this unimaginable crime. The Cold War was in full force and the American government felt it needed to stem the tide of spreading Communism in South East Asia. So, troops were sent to the Democratic Republic of South Vietnam to fight off their northern, Communist enemy. The war was lost before it even started. American politicians were concerned with body counts, kill ratios, and land occupation. Vietnam was about none of these aspects. The Americans dropped napalm, and Agent Orange, they sent B-52 bombers with ten thousand-pound bombs

and dropped these on the dense jungles. They deforested entire regions of land and destroyed the farming areas, which were used by the North Vietnamese Army (NVA) as food, but all this did not change the outcome of the war. There was this underlying, mysterious factor that the Americans could never grasp: to grasp this realization was to win the war. Coppola grasped it, the North Vietnamese fought with it, and the Americans could and would never use it: the realization was doing whatever it takes to win. The only way to do this is to go back into the most inner reaches of our primitive being, go back to the suppressed animal instincts inside every person, reach down deep, grab hold of this instinct and let it consume you, let it take over all your emotions and feeling, lose all

compassion and love you had as a person and become this savage beast. When this beast is found unleash its fury upon all those who stand in your way. Show no mercy, care nothing for the sick mother; hack her head off and make her child watch while you dismember her limb by limb; shoot the elder in their sleep; allow small children to be crucified and burned upon stakes; make husbands kill their wives and children their parents; kill your own brother, uncle, aunt, mother, sister torture then to death and then have no emotion for these people who loved you most. Let your enemies see the carnage you have caused; allow them to realize what waits in store for them; make them believe you laugh at death, and mock the reaper by knocking at his door. Only then can the war be won. The