Monday, March 2, 2015

841. Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse (1991)

Running Time: 96 minutes
Directed By: Fax Bahr, Eleanor Coppola, George Hickenlooper
Written By: Fax Bahr, George Hickenlooper
Main Cast: Francis Ford Coppola, Eleanor Coppola, Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, John Milius
Click here to view the trailer

Note: So it's been a rough week on my end folks and if you have a minute, I'm in a sharing mood. Feel free to skip over this and to the subtitle which will take you right into a sure to be subpar review.

On Monday - one week ago - my wife and I were forced to make a hard decision and have our dog put to sleep. It was a period of time filled with many tears and a few days when I really realized what the term "man's best friend" meant. My wife was more stricken than I, but I won't lie, I was attached to the little guy too and I'll always remember him, as he was my first dog. Understandably, I didn't get a lot of movies watched last week, however, we did set aside Wednesday as a Redbox day where we spent the day in bed taking in five of the this year's Best Picture nominees, almost all of which I was disappointed by (including a blind bought copy of Birdman) - more on that in the monthly recap. Anyway, on Thursday it was back to work and it's been a long week there too, which meant come 8 o'clock at night, my eyelids became heavier by the second and attempting to stay up later to watch movies or write reviews seemed out of the question, so I opted to hit the sack early almost every night last week. I actually finished Hearts of Darkness on Friday night and am just now making it to the computer to take care of the review. I can still remember when I first started the project and how I'd made it a rule never to write a review more than twenty-four hour removed from finishing the film. Today, I could really care less as long as it gets written and I've learned to trust my memory and just say "screw it" when I get too tired. Anyway....long week, but I'm back...let's do it.


Don't expect much out of my here, as I feel a bit rusty at this even though it's only been something like two weeks. I'll do my best and we'll see how it all turns out.

I actually meant to watch this back when I watched Apocalypse Now, but I'm only getting two BOOK movies from Netflix at a time now, it's hard to rush anything and since I'm having fun taking in more non-BOOK movies nowadays, I'm putting myself first when it comes to watching movies lately. If I don't feel like a BOOK movie, I don't have one and it feels good to have that freedom back. Yada, yada, yada....let's cut to the chase.

The film is, of course, about the trials and tribulations that faced Francis Ford Coppola when making Apocalypse Now, which took him like three years and millions of dollars of how own dough. It just goes to show that when you take in a documentary about a subject that you're interested in, it pays off and this was a fine film about filmmaking and I enjoyed it. Actually it's funny that I watched this in the same week that I watched Birdman, Boyhood, The Theory of Everything and The Grand Budapest Hotel - four disappointing films that were nominated for Oscars this year and four films that I'm sure didn't feature a director running around the jungle bare chested. It goes to show that this sort of rogue, bad boy filmmaking is dead and we've entered into a more straight laced era, where the movies that "should be" nominated for Best Picture will be and the ones like Apocalypse Now - featuring director's who were rebels seem to have faded away. However, I doubt that the days of the rebel filmmaker are gone for good and I'm sure someday a new crop of wide eyed and busy tailed movie makers will arise and exciting things will happen.

Man, though, how great must the 70s have been? Bare chested directors pouring heart and soul into their art, drug addled musicians still managing to make masterpieces, while perfectly sober artists today can barely whittle together pieces of music worthy of our ears. Andy Kaufman and Andy Warhol were still alive proving that even things like comedy and soup cans held some sort of creative expression. It was a decade where there was this hemorrhage of talent just oozing out of the world and I wonder if anybody realized it at the time? Certainly Coppola himself didn't even realize it, while making Apocalypse Now - a film that would go on to become one of the most heralded. Sure, it wasn't my personal cup of tea, but I'll admit genius at work and I'll reiterate that the ending is magnificent. It's unreal to hear Coppola talk about shooting himself and dreaming about dying and waking up, only to realize the dread that is his life continued. Good, good stuff here and a doc worthy of your time.

RATING: 7/10  It's good, but honestly, I can't ever see myself rewatching it or anything, as it sort of falls under the category of once you've seen it once, there's really no need to see it again.


March 2, 2015  9:45pm


  1. Our sympathies and commiserations on the loss of your dog.. it must have been a hard (but utterly correct) decision to make.. and I'm sure you both miss him.


SINS OF OMISSION - Entry #66: La piscine/The Swimming Pool (1969)

Running Time: 120 minutes Directed By: Jacques Deray Written By: Jean-Claude Carriere, Jacques Deray, Alain Page Main Cast: Alain Del...