Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse Reviews

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July 8, 2016
A masterpiece of its own, must be seen to further your knowledge and understanding of the movie and deep meanings hidden in it. It's a sad fact that they don't film like that anymore.
May 21, 2016
No where near the insight or detail I would want. For example at the very start of the film the sacking of Lead Keitel is just breezed past with a couple of sentences.
January 27, 2016
One of the best films about the making of films I have ever seen. In some ways it may be better than Apocalypse Now itself - which you should probably watch first, or else this film won't mean as much to you. Thank goodness Eleanor Coppola had the sense to make and keep hold of the tapes and footage which form the core of this fascinating documentary. I'm not sure there's much more I can say about it. Just a brilliant documentary for anyone who's interested in films and the obsessive instincts that lead someone to try and create something as insanely ambitious as Apocalypse Now.
December 15, 2015
This is a riveting behind-the-scenes look at the making of Francis Ford Coppala's masterpiece, APOCALYPSE NOW. This documentary combines interviews with footage shot on location in the Philippines by Eleanor Coppola. This is certainly a must-see for anyone with the slightest interest in how Hollywood movies are made. This is a unique and privileged look inside one of the greatest films ever made.
Robert B.
Super Reviewer
½ October 2, 2015
Four stars is a little bit generous for "Hearts of Darkness" though it is a good documentary. It lacks something, and if I have to guess then I would say it is pacing. The film goes on for a time and then ends. Still, it has good footage and one gets to watch the director face problem after problem yet pull through. Definitely give it a view if you are a fan of Apocalypse Now.
September 14, 2015
The characters behind the movie turn out to be as compelling, if not more so, as the characters in it.
August 3, 2015
Great documentary that does what any good documentary should: document its subject in depth and a way nothing else has. A great portrait of Coppola more than anything, and so revealing on just how off-the-cuff this multi million dollar well laid out project that lasted for over a year really was.
½ May 9, 2015
A very interesting look at the true madness in the creation of the film, giving a sense on how real this all really was.
April 24, 2015
A great view upon the struggle to getting the endless long production of Apocalypse Now done. A hail Coppola.
April 1, 2015
What a great companion peace to Apocalypse Now.
March 7, 2015
Powerful, thought-provoking and edgy. Heart of Darkness: A Filmmakers Apocalypse shows the darker sides of film making and proves that we don't always accept the struggle and personal journey that every director goes through when tasked with creating entire worlds on film.
February 2, 2015
If you like Apocalypse Now, and are a fan of the film-making process than this is a great piece.
½ January 30, 2015
All the more amazing for the fact that it's real. Full review later.
½ January 25, 2015
I just saw Apocalypse Now for the first time a week ago, so it's still completely fresh in my mind. Needless to say, when I heard about this documentary, I had to get my hands on it ASAP. It was totally worth it, because this is a fascinating, in-depth look at the production of the film, highlighting the many problems along the way. I was blown away by a lot of the things I learned from this documentary. It's extremely detailed and personal, showing Coppola teetering on the brink of insanity while trying to bring the film to life. After hearing all these issues, I have an even bigger appreciation for Apocalypse Now. If you are a fan of the film, this is a MUST see.
½ January 1, 2015
Review In A Nutshell:

Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse is a crowning achievement of what making-of documentaries should strive for. It is a film that manages to seep into the deepest depths of a filmmaker's journey whilst also managing to inform the audience of factual and measurable elements throughout Apocalypse Now's production; blending both the subjective and objective. It was also wonderful for the film to incorporate not just the screenplay and directorial elements of the film, but also of the environment around them; the country itself and the relationship that the film had with it, exploring its ups and downs. Seeing parts of my native country being blown and destroyed for the price of beautiful art was both painful and rewarding, leaving me in a dual state of happiness and guilt. Hearts of Darkness proves that exploring the making of a film is just as rewarding and as valuable as the film itself; elevating one's perspective of the film being explored, appreciating more the efforts that were put behind it; and this film manages to achieve this in a little over an hour and a half.
½ September 25, 2014
Fascinating and revealing, especially for the artistic insight.
½ September 21, 2014
Superb documentary on the making of one of the greatest movies of all time. Apocalypse Now as a finished product is a brilliant work of art. An adaptation of Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, it is much more than a war movie. It is a psychological drama, an examination of humanity, sanity and the insanity of war and an exploration of the darkest of human nature.

This documentary details the making of the masterpiece, which was as much as drama as the movie itself. Possibly the most grueling ordeal film-makers have undergone for their craft. Time over-runs, budget blowouts, filming in the middle of a civil war, firing the lead actor, the new leading actor having heart attacks, troubles with another (and very big-name) actor. Just about everything that could go wrong, did go wrong. Yet, the movie was made, and was certainly worth all the effort.

A study in perseverance, vision and suffering for one's art.
½ September 5, 2014
If you ever loose the insight of what filmmaking is about, just watch this again.
August 6, 2014
During the long production of "Apocalypse Now", Coppola's wife Eleanor accompanied him on the shoot and documented the experience through her diaries, audio recordings of her conversations with her husband, and it lead to this making of documentary made n the early 1990s. The shoot was incredibly difficult, so much so that had the film not turned out to be a critical, financial, and award winning success, it could have ruined Coppola right then and there. The film went over budget, shot long, took a lot of time to edit, and was plagued with production problems such as a lead's heart attack, another actor showing up overweight with completely different creative ideas, and sets being destroyed...it's amazing the film ever got made! Somehow Coppola persevered and the film got made and became a successful instant classic. Sadly, the same can't be said for his next ambitious over-budget film. The documentary is well-made, and using the audio of the Orson Welles' Mercury Theater production of "Heart of Darkness" is a nice touch as well.
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