y Apocalypse Now (1979)
The first time Captain Benjamin L. Willard is introduced in the film, he is shown as being high on drugs, drunk and in very bad shape. His face is filmed up side down, everything being reversed and wrong. The fan spinning around in the ceiling sounds like a helicopter from the war and he practices martial arts almost like he is fighting an imaginary enemy. This instantly gives the feeling that Willard is still mentally in the war – without really being there. Willard is throughout the film a very passive figure. He focuses on his mission and do not have an interest in anything else than finding colonel Kurtz. Through his travel, which is the majority of the film, Willard keeps to him self most of the time, reading and researching everything about Kurtz. Willard’s mission is to kill Kurtz, but he finds himself doubting whether he wants to kill Kurtz – or more likely join him. Willard relates to Kurtz’ insanity in some ways, due to his own scars and lunacy coming from the war – and most of all he is fascinated by the bright and talented colonel who some how ends up loosing his mind and is close to unstoppable.
The Playmates’ performance at the US airbase is a very important scene in the film. It is most likely the happiest and brightest moment through the journey for the five soldiers – but also to amusement for all the other soldiers gathered together at the airbase for the joyful entertainment that they do not get a lot of in Vietnam. The Playboy bunnies remind the soldiers of America and the American women waiting at home – like Willard says “The more they tried to make it just like home, the more they made everybody miss it.” It was tough for a lot of soldiers who had to depart from their families, wives or girlfriends at home, to go fight a war in another part of the world. The Playmates performance gives the soldiers optimism, because most of the time it probably felt hopeless being in the war, not knowing for how long and if...
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