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Apocalypse Now: The Complete Dossier
DVD disk
08.14.2006 By: Matt Hosack
Apocalypse Now: The Complete Dossier order
Director:
Francis Ford Coppola

Actors:
Martin Sheen
Marlon Brando
Robert Duvall

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
“I accepted the mission, what the hell else was I going to do.” – Cpt. Willard

Into the HEART OF DARKNESS of Vietnam we go! A battle hardened Cpt. Willard (Martin Sheen) is given a top secret assignment to navigate through the sh*t in Vietnam, and assassinate a top ranking Green Beret Colonel (Marlon Brando). The mission is dangerous and crazy, but that’s the least of Willard’s problems. Directed by Francis Ford Coppola, APOCALYPSE NOW takes you on one of the most unforgettable cinematic journeys ever. From the madness of war to the madness inside ourselves, this movie has the balls to delve into the sh*t. The best part is you’re right there in it with the characters. Whatever you do, never get off the boat.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
APOCALYPSE NOW is one of the best war films ever made, if not THE BEST Vietnam picture ever filmed. WHY – There’s not just a few things that make this film so damn good, but almost everything that goes into film. The craziness and bravado of director Coppola, the amazing performances by the ensemble cast, the scene compositions, the cinematography, the action, and the killer score. What makes everything worthwhile is it is all built on a strong foundation, that is the great story “Heart of Darkness” by Joseph Conrad. Each character is layered with motives and emotions. Really carrying you along the whole picture is the awesome Martin Sheen as you see and discover what he does.

On a more personal note, what really makes this film stand above the rest for me is that the first time my friend and I saw it, we knew what we wanted to do for the rest of our lives. This movie completely blew us away and it was one of the very few times, when I was speechless after the credits rolled. This movie has the splendor and the intimate moments with characters. Coppola sucks you in this world with the badass Doors music and Harrison Ford propagating a kick ass sounding mission, then you are delved in the most spectacular aerial assault sequence anyone has ever seen or will see. Who could forget Robert Duval with dozens of choppers blowing shit up set to Wagner! Topped off with Napalm. And yet Duvall’s Kilgore is just one of the many crazy and interesting characters you meet on the journey.

It is worth mentioning that this film is long and exhausting (in a good way) but the Redux version of the film is even more so. While it does offer some incite into certain scenes and characters, it also adds to the film’s already super sized running time. I prefer the original but what’s kickass about this set is you get both versions. No matter which version is your favorite, what does stand is this film is a monumental achievement and also highly entertaining, yet thought provoking. This movie smells like victory.
THE EXTRAS
The DVDs come in a badass Top Secret Dossier pouch from the film. Both versions of the film are broken up across two discs with bonus features on both. The menus are very attractive and easy to navigate. Do note that the Academy Award winning documentary HEARTS OF DARKNESS is unfortunately not included in this set. There is a Redux Marker that informs you of added scenes.

Disc 1 >

Watch Apocalypse Now Redux with Fancis Coppola >> This is one hell of a cool feature and commentary track. The track is version specific and obviously you get more with the redux. Coppola not only introduces each version but regales you with stories and cool facts about the production. I learned so much from it. Any fan of the film should check this sucker out. Great work.

The Hollow Men >> 16:55 > Did you every want to hear Marlon Brando read an entire T.S. Eliot poem? I though you did.

Monkey Sampan >> 3:00 > Just one of many additional deleted scenes. This scene is particularly alarming and disturbing yet seemed to belong in the movie.

Additional Scenes >> 26 minutes of cool. Lots of stuff here including more Scott Glenn and the fates of several key characters. Worth the look.

A/V Club >> This is the stuff the DVD Clinic digs. You get a look at the technical aspects of the movie. The Birth of 5.1 Sound is a six minute doc on how this was the first film to use 5.1! Ghost Helicopter Flyover is a four minute clip showcasing the layers of sound. “The Synthesizer Soundtrack” by Bob Moog sees Mr. Moog (he invented the synthesizer) using his new weapon of choice on the film’s soundtrack.

Disc 2 >

The Post Production of Apocalypse Now >> Essentially a giant making of documentary, the whole thing is broken down by the following sections:

A Million Feet of Film: The Editing of Apocalypse Now >> 17: 54 > Coppola and Co. shot something of 200 hours of film or a million and a half feet. This is really cool as you get a lot from the filmmakers about the trials of shooting. Coppola actually used some real war footage (such as the Napalm) and he even discusses the skinny on the “5 hr cut.” Lots of unseen and vintage footage. Lots of cool (again).

The Music of Apocalypse Now >> 14:43 > I’ve already mentioned the film’s awesome score which includes The Doors, Wagner, and Mr. Moog. Jim Morrison and his music is discussed as he sent the studio a special four track. There’s even a dude from The Grateful Dead but that’s for you to discover.

Heard Any Good Movies Lately? >> 15:19 > Covers more on the sound mixing and editing. Also very good.

The Final Mix >> 3:07 > This is a nice wrap up with cast interviews and reflections.

PBR Streetgang >> 4:10 > The crew reunite and share cool stories. Fishburne yo!

Apocalypse Then and Now >> 3:40 > Reminisce with Copolla on this triumphant achievement.

The Color Palette of Apocalypse Now >> 4:05 > The use of color is impressive in this film, it’s no wonder why there’s a feature on just this. Reference blacks, lots of colors, no bleeding. It’s all very rich, and the process is looked at here.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
APOCALYPSE NOW: THE COMPLETE DOSSIER is a must see, must buy DVD. It’s why we do what we do here at the DVD Clinic because it makes everything seem worthwhile. Not only is it a stellar motion picture(s) but it is also presented on an incredible DVD set. The quality special features and new audio and video transfers make it worth your while! The best part is it’s under $20! The only disappointment comes from the missing “Hearts of Darkness” doc but this is still a must buy and totally worth the double dip. I highly recommend it!
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