and Then

(subtle pause)

and then some more


Transmedia is a form of storytelling that reaches multiple layers of media to exhibit the unique and creative ways a story can be embellished using the same overall narrative. In this transmedia project, Apocalypse Now, Heart of Darkness, and The Hollow Men are works that are used in this sort of discourse.

Apocalypse Now, a film released in 1979 received much critical acclaim, some even hailing it as the greatest film ever made. The film is set in 1969 Vietnam, at the height of the Vietnam war. It focuses on two characters, a highly intellectual-Hannibal Lecteresque, Colonel Walter E. Kurtz played by Marlon Brando, and the modest yet very observant Captain Benjamin L. Willard played by Martin Sheen. Captain Willard is assigned a mission by generals and higher ranking officials to go out and assassinate Colonel Kurtz, a once more than capable and highly-qualified colonel gone haywire.

The most common misconception of the film is that it is a war-genre film being compared to others such as Full Metal Jacket and Platoon. Despite, its surface theme and setting being encompassed in Vietnam and the time period of the Vietnam War, the main message really comes down to contradictions in life through beliefs, values, realization of reality, and the constant uncertainty of man. The movie also depicts the harsh and brutal treatment of the local Vietnamese by the Americans despite their innocence. The recurring principle of morality is tested through out the film, particularly with Colonel Kurtz and Captain Willard going through commonly understood themes of man verus man, nature, society, and self.
The movie ends with an open-ended question of the journey and finding of oneself, particularly of Captain Willard. After Captain Willard finishes his mission by brutally killing Colonel Kurtz in his state of apathy and nihilism, the film closes with Kurtz sailing away with the last remaining soldier. Then Kurtz's face is transparently projected onto the setting of the river and the tribal statue, while Kurtz voice is whispering, "the horror, the horror." This scene represents Willard leaving Vietnam in a state of trepidation of what is to come ahead; leaving behind the physical horror of the tribe(statue)and the emotions felt with the entire mission and all the hardships that were went through to undergo the missions(Kurtz voice).  

Upon it's release the film won the Palm d'or at the Cannes Film Festival in 1979, and was nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards, and Best Motion Picture for a drama at the Golden Globe Awards. Now it is considered a classic and a film that will always be a foundation for other films, as well as a treat for like-minded film connoisseurs.

Francis Ford Coppola

An Italian-American born director, producer, and screenwriter, Coppola is an internationally-renowned figure and has become one of the biggest influences in Hollywood cinema as well as in cinema on an international level. He has created other acclaimed films such as The Godfather, American Graffiti, The Outsiders, and countless others that have impacted cinema in one way or another. Coppola was inspired by both the novella Heart of Darkness and the poem The Hollow Men, and adapted the novella and poem to fit his screenplay, Apocalypse Now.

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