heart of darkness

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Various parallels can be drawn when comparing and contrasting Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness and Frank Coppola's "Apocalypse Now", while taking into consideration Heart of Darkness is a novella and "Apocalypse Now" is a film. These differences and similarities can be seen in themes, characters, events and other small snippets of information including anything from quoted lines to strange actions of the main characters. Both pieces follow the same story line but they are presented in different contexts, allowing for many differences as well as the ability to see how Conrad is able to write a piece of literature that can be transposed to many different settings regardless the time period and still convey the same message of colonialism. The most obvious and apparent parallel between "Apocalypse Now" and Heart of Darkness is the differences in the venues in which the stories take place as well as the era in which each piece are set. "Apocalypse Now" is set during the Vietnam War with the protagonist being Captain Willard, who is sent on a mission to kill one of his own. While in Heart of Darkness, the protagonist is Marlow, a Belgian who heads into the Congo to find one of his company's workers, respectively. Marlow and Willard both learn about the battle between good and evil, and the evil that the jungle can bring out in anyone. One great similarity is Marlow and Willard's ability to hold back from succumbing to the `darkness' of the jungle by keeping their integrity and sticking to their goals. Consequently, Marlow and Willard are essentially the same character, however they have slight variations. Willard does not have the philosophical insight that Marlow has and is not always able to comprehend like him. One large difference that I was able to find between Heart of Darkness and "Apocalypse Now" is the dependence and want of a substance. In Heart of Darkness, the great majority for the premise of Marlow's journey was built off of ivory expeditions and that is what Kurtz is all about. "Apocalypse Now" has no comparable ideal. The character of Kurtz is constant in both Heart of Darkness and "Apocalypse Now." In each piece Kurtz is a man with good intentions that turns evil from greed and what he finds in the jungle, whether it is an object or power. Kurtz sees himself in Marlow or Wi... ... middle of paper ... ...w" is the use Kurtz's final words "The horror! The horror." In Heart of Darkness there is a variety of meanings from the horror that his work is not complete or his final realization of the horrors of the jungle. The same thing is apparent in "Apocalypse Now", "The horror! The horror!", has the same effect and a variety of meaning, including Kurtz's realization and `the horror' that Kurtz's presence will always be with Willard or Marlow. In conclusion, a great number of parallels can be drawn when comparing and contrasting Frank Coppola's film, "Apocalypse Now" and Joseph Conrad's novella, Heart of Darkness. Many of the differences and similarities pertain to the setting, racist tones, themes, and the characters themselves. Though in different contexts, one being a book, and the other a film, both prove to be effective in showing the horrors of colonialism as well as the power and the great that anyone can produce. "Apocalypse Now" is the perfect example of showing the universality of Conrad's novella, and how it able to be translated in many different ways and manipulated effectively to interest people of all walks of life.

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