Light and Dark in Apocalypse Now and Heart of Darkness Essays

Light and Dark in Apocalypse Now and Heart of Darkness Essays

Length: 1681 words (4.8 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Light and Dark in Apocalypse Now and Heart of Darkness

In Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, Marlow chooses a brighter path than his counterpart in Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now, Capt. Willard. The two share in the duty of searching for and discovering Kurtz, as well as taking care of his memory, but their beliefs before encountering him place the characters at opposing ends of a theme. These opposing ends are light and dark, representing good and evil.

In the opening pages of Heart of Darkness, Marlow begins telling a tale of himself as nothing more than a sailor, who had a taste for adventure and saw the navigation of a river in such a distant and mysterious place as the Congo as a chance to find it. Capt. Willard however, had "prayed for a mission, and for [his] sins they gave [him] one"(AP). Marlow's disposition at the beginning of this journey is that of a bored young man, trying to fill his time: a noble and societally acceptable existence. Capt. Willard is beyond the bounds of normal society as he begins narrating Apocalypse Now from his hotel room in Saigon. He explains: "When I was here [at the war] I wanted to be there [back home]. When I was there all I could think of was getting back into the jungle"(AP). Willard is outside of society but is hanging on slightly by his connection to the Army. This connection is a weak one, because of the nature of war and the fact that in war the laws of normal society are not applicable. Kurtz though, has taken the final step by breaking away from the army; "he broke from them, and then he broke from himself. I'd never seen a man so broken up and ripped apart"(AP). Willard doesn't even know if he will oppose Kurtz when he meets him, because he sees Kurtz in himself...

... middle of paper ...

...v099B/fa/n022/a-e-apocalypse-fortmeyer.html created 1994 (accessed 23 Jan. 2000).

Heart of Darkness. Dir. Nicolas Roeg. Turner Network Television (TNT) Pictures, 1994.

Heart of Darkness: Theme/Symbol/Allusion/Foreshadow (accessed 21 Jan. 2000).

Nash, Jay Robert, and Stanley Ralph Ross. "Apocalypse Now" The Motion Picture Guide. Chicago: Cinebooks, 1985.

Raskin, Jonah. The Mythology of Imperialism. New York: Random, 1971.

Urch, Martin. Apocalypse Now: A film review by Martin Urch created 1994 (accessed 29 Jan. 2000).

Virtanen, Panu S. Plot summary of 'Apocalypse Now' (accessed 16 Jan. 2000).

Watts, Cedric. Conrad's Heart of Darkness: A Critical and Contextual Discussion. Milan: Mursia International, 1977.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Apocalypse Now By Francis Ford Coppola Essay

- Yun 1 Scene Analysis: Apocalypse Now- Kurtz Compound begins 1:53:54-ends 1:58:43 Chunghee Yun, 2D04, May 2nd 2016 The film, Apocalypse Now, directed by Francis Ford Coppola is about not only the Vietnam War but also human nature in the war. In other words, it focuses on portraying the dark side of human nature in the Vietnam War rather than the reality of the War. The protagonist, U.S. Army Captain Willard, takes a secret mission from military superiors. The mission is to search for and terminate Colonel Walter E....   [tags: Apocalypse Now, Francis Ford Coppola]

Powerful Essays
1303 words (3.7 pages)

Essay about Heart Of Darkness, By Joseph Conrad

- When asked what stands as some of the best movie adaptations of novels, what films come to mind. The Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and many other movies certainly come to mind, but there are always those select few that are untouched gems, somewhat left hiding in the dark. Francis Ford Coppola 's Apocalypse Now is a superb film, drawing certain plot points and inspiration from the equally superb novel Heart of Darkness, written by Joseph Conrad. In order to truly feel the masterpieces, however, the movie and novel should be paired together, for the combination allows the reader or viewer to make the connections between the two....   [tags: Apocalypse Now, Francis Ford Coppola]

Powerful Essays
1643 words (4.7 pages)

Essay about Analysis Of Joseph Conrad 's Heart Of Darkness

- Anchored at the mouth of the Thames river, five old friends pause their journey to wait out a tide at sundown. As they repose, they reminisce about the many great men and ships that travelled on river to complete multiple voyages for trade. Marlow’s excursion parallels that journey of the hero. He enters the Congo as an innocent sailor and leaves as a changed man. In Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad creates an allegory and archetypal journey that consists of: the task, the journey, the initiation, the fall, and the unhealable wound created during the expedition....   [tags: Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad, Apocalypse Now]

Powerful Essays
1730 words (4.9 pages)

Essay about Heart of Darkness Versus Apocalypse Now: The Death of Kurtz

- Heart of Darkness Versus Apocalypse Now: The Death of Kurtz Joseph Conrad wrote Heart of Darkness to disguise his disapproval of European imperialism in the Congo. He describes the chaos and savagery found in the Congo to convince Europeans that they should stay out of Africa. Francis Ford Coppola made Apocalypse Now to disguise his disapproval of American involvement in Vietnam. He depicts the merciless slaughter of countless Vietnamese to show Americans that the United States does more harm than good in Vietnam....   [tags: Film Analysis, Conrad]

Powerful Essays
832 words (2.4 pages)

Apocalypse Now that mirrored Heart of Darkness: Novel Comparison Essay

- Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now portrays the brutality of the Vietnam War and American’s perspective from therein. Coppola successfully produced this film parallel to Joseph Conrad’s 1899 novella, Heart of Darkness. Both portray the effects of imperialism on a native land with respect to the imperialists’ viewpoint. The scene of Apocalypse Now that mirrored Heart of Darkness with the most creative license, on the behalf of Coppola, is perhaps the final scene as Kurtz is slaughtered. Each creator successfully utilized the arts of their crafts to create a final production worthy of admiration while clearly stating their interpretation of imperialism....   [tags: francis coppola, joseph conrad, imperialism]

Powerful Essays
669 words (1.9 pages)

Essay about Movie versus Film: Heart of Darkness and Apocalypse Now

- Throughout the history of our technological age, film makers have spotted the brilliance of classic novels and have, thus, envisioned taking the work of literature and forming it into a film in hopes to portray the genius of the novel within their medium. One such example is that of Joseph Conrad’s novel Heart of Darkness and Francis Ford Coppola’s movie Apocalypse Now. In Conrad’s work, his use of imagery, diction, and tone elevate his novel to the pinnacle of imperialistic writing while Coppola’s film uses sound, light, visual stimulants, as well as facial expressions to craft his work while portraying the emotion felt within Conrad’s piece....   [tags: movies, films, filmmakers, joseph conrad]

Powerful Essays
787 words (2.2 pages)

Light and Dark Sides of Jane Eyre Essay example

- The red hue is conjointly used in The Book of Revelations as the color of the seven headed dragon. “Then another sign appeared in heaven: and behold, a great red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads were seven diadems” (Revelation 12:3). This dragon represents evil and esoteric darkness. The tenebrous serpent is Jane’s burden due to her extreme passions and unpleasant aunt. While crimson is not traditionally associated with light-dark imagery, the red room was selected to illustrate both Jane’s passion as a child and as the color of war and bloodshed....   [tags: Literary Analysis]

Powerful Essays
1911 words (5.5 pages)

Apocalypse Now vs Heart of Darkness Essay

- Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now lacks the impact of its inspiration, Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. While the basic elements of imperialism and human nature remain intact, the characters of the film bare little resemblance to their literary counterparts. The film serves as a re-interpretation of Conrad’s novella, updated from 19th-century British imperialism in the Congo to a critique of 20th-century U.S. imperialism in Southeast Asia. Coppola’s changes in setting and plot structure, however, force the film to sacrifice the character development so crucial in the literary work....   [tags: essays research papers]

Powerful Essays
1123 words (3.2 pages)

Comparative Essay of Heart of Darkness and Apocalypse Now

- Comparative Essay of Heart of Darkness and Apocalypse Now The ties between Joseph Conrad's book, “Heart of Darkness” and Francis Coppola's movie, “Apocalypse Now” are unmistakable. Apocalypse Now's correctness in following the story line of the Heart of Darkness is amazing although the settings of each story are from completely different location and time periods. From the jungle of the Congo in Africa to the Nung river in Vietnam, Joseph Conrad's ideals are not lost. In both the book and the movie, the ideas of good and evil, whiteness, darkness, and racism are clear....   [tags: Racism Africa Movies Literature Essays]

Powerful Essays
1063 words (3 pages)

Essay about Comparing Conrad's Heart of Darkness and Coppola's Apocalypse Now

- Similarities in Conrad's Heart of Darkness and Coppola's Apocalypse Now Sometimes, a work is so great that artists from other forms of expression are compelled to interpret that work in their own medium. Francis Ford Coppola took James Conrad’s classic novel Heart of Darkness and updated it to the time of the Vietnam War. James Conrad’s classic novella Heart of Darkness is a tale about a seaman who makes his way up the Congo river in search of a man and his ivory. In 1979, Francis Ford Coppola released Apocalypse Now, centered around an Army officer that has been ordered to assassinate an insane American officer....   [tags: Movie Film comparison compare contrast]

Powerful Essays
3613 words (10.3 pages)