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1979's Film, Apocalypse Now

That framework entails the Intended, as she is called, Kurtz's fiancTe and the woman who asks Marlow to go to the jungle to find out what has happened to Kurtz. Imagery of light and dark is used to contrast ideas in the work, and the scenes with the Intended fit this pattern:

Throughout the novel, darkness has been used as a background for the pilgrims, as a background for the journey, as a suggestion of hidden kinship, as the deepest aspect of the human heart and soul. . . The scene with the Intended has illuminated this: the darkness is that which underlies and undermines the whiteness. . . (Hoffman 46).

Captain Willard is the Marlow of the film. He is sent not by a fiancTe and not by a force of light but by a conspirator in the darkness, presumably a combination of the army and the CIA. Willard is also sent--his assistance is not requested but ordered. The film and the novel have numerous parallels and the same general structure:

Apocalypse Now, like Heart of Darkness, amounts to a journey, a quest the ramifications of which emerge from the gloom only as each step is completed. Willard's brief is to "terminate the colonel's command--with extreme prejudice." For Marlow, "it was written when I could be loyal to the nightmare of my choice." For both travelers, the discovery of Kurtz will lead to a confrontation with their innermost self (Cowie 136).

The scene in which Willard is given his orders contrasts sharply with that in the novel. Marlow himself will be portrayed as a force of light in comparison to the darkness of Kurtz, and he begins in the light of the Intended and her world, a civilized world which will contrasts sharply with the world of the jungle and the darkness into which Marlow must journey. In Conrad's novel, women are the protectors of the social order, as the Intended represents when she asks Marlow to find Kurtz. In the end, upon his return, Marlow lies to her so he will not have to reveal the n...

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1979's Film, Apocalypse Now. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 23:43, August 18, 2017, from
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