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90

Universal acclaim - based on 29 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 281 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 29
  2. Negative: 1 out of 29
  1. Magnificent to look at, thrilling, ingenious, spellbinding and superbly done on every level, this is not just one of the best films of the year or the decade, but of all time.
  2. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    100
    The best film of 2001 was made in 1979.
  3. Coppola and Murch have balanced their new edit with grace notes of sweetness, elegance and eroticism, and the payoff is grand, providing both a reprieve from the multiple blitzkriegs and a break in the monotony of the cruise up the Nung.
  4. 100
    The breathtaking visual and aural restoration by Coppola and Murch makes the film's original glories even more intense than you remember them.
  5. Better in certain ways than the original "Apocalypse Now," though the flaws are also magnified.
  6. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    90
    Redux is both a reminder of American cinema's last glory days and a rebuke to the timid present. Maybe Apocalypse Now wasn't the best movie of 1979, but Redux is surely the film to beat for 2001.
  7. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    30
    Excruciatingly bad...Probably if Redux hadn't been acclaimed as a newly minted masterpiece, I wouldn't have felt so compelled to blow raspberries.

See all 29 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 57 out of 63
  2. Negative: 2 out of 63
  1. Nov 7, 2012
    10
    Apocalypse Now is one of the most awe-inspiring films of all time. It truly is, in every sense of the word, a masterpiece.
  2. Dec 1, 2013
    10
    The moment we are introduced to the main character, it's clear what the war has done to his mind. He is in a haze. Part of special operations, his tasks often involve assassinating people deemed hazardous to the war effort. He is not expected to think for himself. Actually the dossier he is given over his next target he only opens to read once he has set off for the mission, and it's instantly clear that even if he could find sympathy for his target, he must at all costs finish the mission.

    The focus here is of course on the Vietnam War. A colonel has gone renegade and needs to be killed. A captain is sent to do the job. On his way he comes across various units, one of whom treats war as a picnic outing. Human nature, it would seem, would politicize almost anything. Video cameras roll as soldiers pretend to be caught in an ambush. Officers having their pictures taken for publicity stunts. This would have been disturbing in itself, this total disregard for human suffering, of the people of the land they have invaded and their own wounded and killed. But it is apparent that these men only do these things to feel normal, or whatever passes for normal during a bloody war.

    As the captain travels up the river, the banks are littered with unattended dead. No one has the time and the interest to bury them. The whole pointlessness of war is shown with poignant imagery. One would think two wars that caused the deaths of tens of millions would have been enough to teach mankind the lesson of a lifetime. Still about one and a half million Vietnamese had to perish, not to count the dead of several other wars. And the lesson is still not learnt.

    It becomes more disturbing as Captain Willard goes deeper and closer to the source of the conflict. Command structures have completely vanished. A mass hysteria seems to have gripped these men. They joke and laugh like maniacs and kill with complete apathy. This before Willard has even reached his destination. But nothing prepares you for what awaits him at the end of his journey. The colonel has gathered himself a cult following of native Cambodians and Vietnamese among some Americans too. That place gave me the creeps.

    The film explored how the violence and cruelty of war alters the nature of men fighting it, especially wars of an imperial nature. How the soldiers become desensitized and dehumanize everyone, suspect everyone, kill with impunity. They may not be aware of this at the moment, but killing a human being, even one you will always consider somewhere between your pets and an insect, will have an effect on you. Coppola succeeds in showing this message loud and clear.

    Martin Sheen tackles his character with a relaxed laid-back approach. He is in no rush to reach his destination. The journey is the real part of the story. But when he does reach the colonel, even after everything he has seen on the way, including his own slip of character, he still is surprised at the colonel's doings. Marlon Brando plays a lunatic with extreme precision.

    This being a war movie, the scale of the human involvement and military machinery was captured effectively. The costumes and make up department did a wondrous job. The equatorial climate has everyone perspiring constantly. You know that they hate the weather, the country, the jungles, and most disturbingly of all, the people. Their dead count for nothing and they lie and rot.

    I must admit that this movie made me very uncomfortable and unsettled at times. The way some of the characters seem to lose their minds is palpable and frightening, like losing it is itself chosen as a way to remain sane in the face of such devastation of human lives.
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  3. Aug 17, 2012
    10
    One of my favorite movies of all-time. It is absolutely unrelenting in maintaining a constant disorientation and incredibly disturbing tone throughout. Expand
  4. Apr 4, 2014
    10
    A Phenomenal triumph! Haunting, powerful and an outstanding piece of cinema. A very dark and psychological war film, with a great, powerful and memorable performance from Marlon Brando, as well as the rest of the cast who are all terrific. The action, destruction and every little detail is tremendously captured on camera. Rarely in movies can the film makers make such tension between characters, using superb lighting and soundtrack. The air assault on the village never gets old, love it! Classic masterpiece! Expand
  5. Apr 14, 2013
    9
    One of the greatest war movies of all-time with many of the most iconic moments and quotes in cinema. This film took so many hardships to make and Francis Ford Coppola definitely made history. Expand
  6. Sep 10, 2011
    9
    Francis Coppola's haunting war movie "Apocalypse Now" presents (obviously) powerful performance from Marlon Brando and a lasting appeal. Easily one of the greatest, and possibly the darkest, war movie I have ever encountered. -REDUX VERSION-
    The movie once again throws us off the hook with chilling cinematography and realism. However, most of the added parts are trivial and have no depth in scene compared to the original scenes of "Apocalypse Now".
    Expand
  7. osh
    Dec 22, 2012
    3
    Apocalypse Now was bizarre, and I didn't understand it or enjoy it. I got the feeling that it was supposed to be the skewed memories of a mentally ill soldier's experiences in the Vietnam War, and it was somewhat interesting in that light, but that aspect didn't keep me interested for the entire two-and-a-half-hour running time. It was slow, weird, and boring at parts, and at others it was too fast and saturated with ridiculous action shots. The entire thing, though, was confusing to me. Every character seemed to act so strangely with no given explanation as to why, and while this would make sense if the movie was indeed shown through the eyes of a madman (or if everyone was a madman), it was still be frustrating to watch. There were also lots of fireworks posing as rockets and gunfire, and there was a good deal of cheesy synthesizer music that didn't help the movie. I couldn't find much to actually enjoy or appreciate in Apocalypse Now. I seem to be a small minority in my opinion of this film, I do realize, but I just want to make my voice heard so new viewers don't think that this movie's supposed "universal acclaim" is actually universal. Expand

See all 63 User Reviews

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