Apocalypse Now Redux - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Apocalypse Now Redux Reviews

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July 11, 2016
Boring, drawn out and scenes added in that didn't need to be there, Apocalypse Now Redux is one of the most disappointing classics.
½ May 10, 2016
A truly dark journey into the minds of desperate and troubled men.
½ May 3, 2016
A raw, dark, and legendary war epic. And this is the spicy version. Hard to get through. Harder to look away. Must-see!
½ February 12, 2016
160212: The only thing that comes to mind is "powerful".
February 3, 2016
As a standalone film, it's agonizingly long, and the worthwhile takeaways from the original are lost in the mud. This piece serves as a reminder as to why even the greatest directors need peer counsel.
February 1, 2016
This wasn't bad adding some extra scenes into it, and I found the French plantation scene to be interesting!
January 28, 2016
A masterpiece - one of the greatest movies ever made.

Vietnam, 1967. An elite soldier, Captain Willard (played by Martin Sheen), is sent on a top secret mission to "terminate with extreme prejudice" Colonel Kurtz (Marlon Brando). Colonel Kurtz is a US Army officer who has apparently gone insane and is fighting his own war from within Cambodia with an army of native soldiers. To find Kurtz, Willard sets off down the river on a patrol boat...

Searingly brilliant. As a story alone this movie is fantastic. Superb plot with some iconic scenes (eg Ride of the Valkyries), great, quotable dialogue (eg Napalm in the morning, The Horror) and some very funny lines ("Charlie don't surf!").

Director Francis Ford Coppola expertly builds the tension. The movie starts off quite light-heartedly - the first third or so of the movie is quite funny, especially anything involving Colonel Kilgore (Robert Duvall). It is actually over-the-top funny (eg surfing in the middle of a fire fight), which might seem strange but shows you the insanity of war and soldiers at war, and prepares you for what comes later.

As the movie goes on it becomes much darker. Coppola slowly tightens the rope around the viewer's neck, until the intensity is suffocating. By the end you're in the middle of a nightmare, a hell on earth. This demonstrates the slow progression from balanced soldier to insane maniac.

So many deeper issues tackled along the way: the duality of man, good vs evil, the morality of war and why the US lost in Vietnam.

Excellent performances from Sheen, Brando and Duvall. Duvall received a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for his performance. Good support from a cast that includes Dennis Hopper, Harrison Ford and Laurence Fishburne.

Regarding the Redux version, its add-on scenes are of mixed value. Some are great - anything involving Colonel Kilgore / Robert Duvall is definitely a win as his character is comedy gold. Some parts of the French plantation scene are very useful, and give you a clue to where the US is going with the war and why they will lose it, but some of it feels like padding. The entire Medevac scene (with the Playboy bunnies) is unnecessary.

So a bit hit-and-miss. Overall the extra scenes probably enhance the movie, slightly.
January 25, 2016
Apocalypse Now is my favourite film of all time. It is on most top 100 movie lists. It is certainly a work of art and long labour of Francis Ford Coppola (see Hearts of Darkness, the documentary about the making of this film).

The film is an adaptation of Joseph Conrad's book, Heart of Darkness, placed in the context of the Vietnam War, rather than in Africa. Martin Sheen is brilliant as the protagonist. Marlon Brando is in his natural element as an actor, largely improvising his role as Colonel Kurtz.

The Redux version adds some unnecessary footage, that is not essential for first time viewers, but appreciated by Apocalypse Now aficionados such as myself.

At 3 hours, this film is an epic, yet has little dialogue. It is mostly narrated by Captain Willard, the leader of an expedition to terminate Kurtz. It has a strong parallel to Dante's Inferno, as the travelers pass through the different stages of Hell (i.e. war is hell). The travelling up river theme has also borrowed heavily from Herzog's Aguirre, Wrath of God. Performances by Dennis Hopper, Robert Duvall and Harrison Ford round out the cast.

This is not a casual film. This is a work of art to be savoured and studied. The sound and visuals are equally as important as the dialogue and acting. The film is in a class by itself and sparked a revisiting of Vietnam films after it. It is a must see for anyone who appreciates cinema. This is the art in its highest form.
December 30, 2015
Great movie, but the original version is better.
December 14, 2015
Apocalypse Now is nothing short of a movie masterpiece, soaked heavily in political sludge, psychotic visuals and atmospheric tension, its intimidating length and scope can at points become too much to handle, but that only adds to the behemoths charm. Francis Ford Coppola crafts another of a generations essential tales, with his demonic depiction of the Vietnam war, during the height of American occupation. Vietnam is ravaged by gorilla warfare, napalm and the brash American war machine, its very chaotic nature mirrors any description of hell imaginable. We follow Captain Willard, a tarnished man, living in dire need of war and the opportunity to step once again back on the front line. Willard gets his wish and is soon sent of a highly classified mission to sail into uncharted and illegal territory, in order to execute a bent Colonel, who has turned his back on his nation and created a primal tribe of followers, deep in the Cambodian rain forests. From its psychedelic opening, as Jim Morrison haunts our ears with This Is The End, as visuals of helicopters and a smoke filled sunset cross fade into motion, to the bold and scatter shot finale, Apocalypse now thrusts you head first into a dream like state, feeling almost like an acid trip gone wrong. Coppola manages to capture a different side to war, something brutal yet visually arresting, with the use of gorgeous visuals and huge sense of scale. Vietnam feels completely immersable, at no point do you feel like your anywhere else, you feel like your sailing down a dangerous river on a top secret mission, you feel like your trapped inside a lunatics mind and at no point does it ever get boring. Helmed by a ferocious cast, Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall, Lawrence Fishburne, Dennis Hopper, Scott Glen and Harrison Ford to name a few, each actor completely envelopes their role, although particular praise must be given for Duvall's show stealing effort as a maniac with control of an entire army, who cares about nothing apart from finding a good place to surf and massacre Vietnamese. Apocalypse now constantly feels threatening and vital, its violence is raw and disgusting, it gifts the viewer with a constant paranoia, a sense of immersion and some brilliantly crafted dialogue to boot. This is a rare occasion where a film transcends from a piece of celluloid into an experience and what an experience it is. Rivaled by none, Apocalypse Now is an absolute must, its bold, unflinching and hypnotic nature will have you coming back for more, time and time again.
½ December 12, 2015
Kinda long, kinda boring at times. WTH was that part with the French!!
½ November 22, 2015
Tiene nuevas escenas algunas buenas y otras innecesarias.
½ October 4, 2015
Hvis nogen kan fortælle mig, hvad den film går ud på, bliver jeg meget glad. En ydre og indre rejse, javel, men behøvede den tage tre og en kvart time? Efter min bedste mening et mønstereksempel på kejserens nye klæder. Men nu ved jeg da i det mindste, hvor Lars von Trier har en del af inspirationen til sine "kunstfilm" fra.
September 14, 2015
A lesson in adding by subtracting, the new scenes explain small details that made the cut but aren't necessary for the film and ultimately drag it out more than anything. The original is better, but Redux is worth seeing if you know the Apocalypse Now already.
September 12, 2015
For those who haven't seen Apocalypse Now, it is certainly worth the investment of time. Aesthetically it's a beautiful film. Though customarily I tend to gravitate toward the ubiquitous "director's cut", in my opinion, this vainglorious version of the film would probably have been better left on the cutting room floor. The one hour of added footage -to an already excessively lengthy film- seemed redundant and added little to enhance the film's experience.
It has been over ten years since I've seen Coppola's original and remember very few details yet when viewing this rendition I was able to spot each and every added scene due to the timing or sequential plodding. Each scene contributed in it's own drab way and had me drifting off uninterested. As much as I loved Robert Duvall's brief stint, the Colonel's loudspeaker search seemed brazenly comical. The Playboy bunny sequence seemed strange and forced. The lavish French plantation scene was simply out of place like a pointless dream within a nightmare that trudged along without a purpose. Marlon Brando's scene with the newspaper articles felt improvised and strained.
I'm sure there were small enhancements here and there but of the added scenes I don't know if there's anything here that would warrant the extra hour of time unless out of curiosity after having viewed the original.
½ September 10, 2015
Sprawling epic of a modern, if surreal, war story. But did it mean anything?
July 14, 2015
The best war movie ever done.
July 12, 2015
Epic for a whole different reason that I thought it would be, They just don't make em like this anymore.
June 26, 2015
This is the definite version of the greatest depiction of the insanity of the Vietnam War.
½ June 21, 2015
It sort of masters the feeling of being taken on a trip to a dark sanctified place deep in the heart of something. In "The Heart of Darkness" the narrator is on a schooner heading into the heart of the Congo, here the captain is heading into what I presume to be the heart of Vietnam, Cambodia. I can only imagine the idea behind structuring the story to parallel Conrad's novel was to possibly stress the idea that America had imperialistic reasons for being in Vietnam. Because, you see, in the novel, through the use of frame narrative, England is shown to be in Africa for totally selfish imperialistic reasons. This movie works on levels, and the top level is near sublime. So we have the obvious parallel to 'The Heart of Darkness' in the story. But then we get some sublime visuals too. For instance, the giant explosion by the beach- so that the Lt. can surf! I thought it was hilarious when Williams stole his surf board. You know how hard it is to find a good surf board? Surfing is what the Lt. thought about. Seems bizarre. It is moments like this that make the story feel intriguing. But in the Redux, there is a scene that doesn't quite reach the standard the others have set. The captain sells the playboy bunny manager two barrels of oil so that his men can have some alone time with the playboy bunnies. Although I thought the scene was funny and clever, especially in its subtle irony- the soldiers are dressing the playmates up in an effort to make them look like they do in their centerpieces as the playmates talk on and on about their feelings- the message is one that I don't think anyone really needs to hear, and I think there is much more better material that could have been developed, especially since the movie is about such an interesting idea. I just hate it when the script begins to wander away from its important themes. And like I think that the scene might have ruined the delicate balance between the real and the bizarre that this movie balances amazingly throughout. No soldier's would ever be given an hour to sleep with an extremely pretty nude model for the exchange of two barrels of oil. It is this sort of temporary fall into bad taste that the director of this movie ultimately fell from.
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