Francis Ford Coppola's Vietnam “The Apocalypse Now” deals with morality and corruption. The story begins with Captain Willard being sent into Cambodia to terminate Colonel Kurtz, who was a soldier that abandoned the US Army and have stared operating on his own…
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Kurtz is the manifestation of America’s inner collective awareness regarding Vietnam. He defends America’s participation by implying that the Viet Cong are stronger because of their montrosity. The movie portrays Kurtz as a product of the imperfect system, which takes its values to the most extreme conclusion. He was prepared and trained to fill a political position in the future but instead, he turned against the very forces that created him. (French, 1998) Kilgore utters his infamous phrase “I love the smell of napalm in the morning” at Charlie’s point. His helicopter name was death from above swept in, in sensational formation, accompanied by a musical score of The Ride of the Valkyries, which symbolized the significant passage of dead heroes into Valhalla. This scene lauds war wherein the soldiers become God-like heroes. The Vietnamese remained faceless but the camera isolated the agony of a sole US soldier and this aesthetic show of violence adds to the feel of twisted patriotism. America’s colonial belief were reproduced through the fighting that was occurring in the midst of the California surf. The audience were being encouraged to believe that, contrary to popular belief, the war was not unendurable for the soldiers and so the film made use of chauvinistic approaches to show how the actuality of this situation was compromised. It focuses on the suffering of the US by implying that they were fighting amongst themselves. They either fight or surf. Smoothness in contrast with orientation is a visible theme here. The war itself was compelling and full of meaning, however, a bunch of clowns were running the show. The mission was commendable but the missionaries themselves were not. As Willard was entrusted with the mission to to find and terminate Kurtz, with the full understanding that the man has gone insane, the methods he applied in order to achieve his goals were insufficient. The deeper Willard goes into the Vietnamese jungle, the more his awareness was rising in regards to his comprehension of how and why Kurtz became what he is. Kurtz lost himself in the very heart of darkness wherein he had no choice but to make his own rules in order to survive. The characters in the story displayed deep respect for Kurtz, which, Willard himself felt compelled to admire himself. By confronting the shift in the shift in his opinion of Kurtz, Willard emphasized how Kurtz can not be judged the way an ordinary man will be judged. Kurtz is a man who was able to transcend to the heights of what other characters in the story are also longing for. Living far away in the jungle, Kurtz was able to escape the bonds which morality and conscientiousness that societies impose. He has turned into a creature filled with the deepest desires and wishes of a every human being, although suppressed. Willard kills him in the end. Kurtz’ last words “The Horror, the horror” associates to what he must have felt while he was becoming a part of the wilderness. He acted with what his cardinal impulses were telling him. He killed whomever he wanted to kill and talked to people any way he wanted to and generally treated everyone like he was the one with the power or authority to decide. One view of the story is the message of how the environment can affect one’s mind. Sigmund Freud’s model of the human mind may be used in order to explain how Kurtz’ may have been influenced by the environment. When he left the society as a civilized human being and stepped into a whole new
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