Monday, 22 July 2019

Apocalypse Now Final Cut: NZIFF Review

Apocalypse Now Final Cut: NZIFF Review

It's difficult to honestly appraise the differences of Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now Final Cut given it's this reviewer's first exposure to the movie itself.

What is clear from the sprawling epic is this is the cut Coppola wanted to have as the definitive one, and the one which he's determined will be his last and ultimate take on the Vietnam movie.
Apocalypse Now Final Cut: NZIFF Review

For those uninitiated to the story, this is the tale of Martin Sheen's Captain Willard, who's given the job of assassinating Marlon Brando's Colonel Kurtz, who's gone wild within the confines of Cambodia and is seen as a threat by the US Military.

Assembling a small team, Willard ventures deep into territory of the forest and the unknown.

Coppola's greatest achievement is assembling the pieces early on in the first hour into action scenes which are a visual symphony that showcases CGI is not always best. As explosions rock the jungle, choppers head over, and the camera never sways from its leads, it's clear Coppola is in his element and assemblage.

But despite heightened colours and improved audio, the film's final hour descends into discord, an anti-climactic meh of epic proportions that does little to build on the promised showdown. (A pair of 21st century eyes would notice how all the characters of colour are dispatched before the final act concludes).

It's still an impressive epic, but its unwieldly sprawl does hit it quite badly in the final third of the run. However, fans of Apocalypse Now will want to witness the film in the way its creator envisioned.

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