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"Apocalypse Now": The Ultimate A-Z (Bloomsbury Movie Guide) [Paperback]

Karl French
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
RRP: 10.99
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Book Description

24 Sep 1998 Bloomsbury Movie Guide
This is an encylopaedic guide to all aspects of the film "Apocalypse Now".

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"Apocalypse Now": The Ultimate A-Z (Bloomsbury Movie Guide) + Notes: The Making of Apocalypse Now + Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse [1991] [DVD]
Price For All Three: 32.64

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (24 Sep 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747538042
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747538042
  • Product Dimensions: 20.2 x 14.4 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 240,542 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

Karl French describes Francis Ford Coppola's seminal Vietnam movie as "one of a handful of works of art as famous for the process of its creation as for its finished form". It is a film which achieved notoriety even before release, coming under intense press speculation following Coppola's success with The Godfather and its sequel. The production lurched from mishap to mishap in the Philippines for eight months, fuelled by drugs and vastly exceeding its budget; Coppola contributed to the legend, screening his work-in-progress at the Cannes Film Festival and telling the audience "it was crazy...we were in the jungle, we had access to too much money, too much equipment, and little by little we went insane".

This A--Z guide is an attempt to dissect the madness of Apocalypse Now by breaking it down into snippets of information, the author describing his book as "a product of, and investigation into, the film's enduring fascination". French finds room to discuss parallels with myths and works of literature, aspects of the writing and production of the film, and its enduring legacy in popular culture. Sections on Joseph Conrad and T S Eliot appear alongside lyrics by punk band the Clash, transcripts of oft-quoted dialogue, details of longer cuts available as bootlegs, and biographies of stars who did not quite make it into the film. The result is a wealth of information which will enhance a viewer's appreciation and enjoyment of the film, and a volume which achieves a rare balance between trivia and critical insight. --John Oates

About the Author

Karl French is the co-author of Cult Movies and the editor if The Oficial Spinal Tap Companion.

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
There are few films more apt for an A-Z guide than this Francis Ford Coppola classic. It boasts references to literary classics like Conrad, Eliot and The Odyssey as well as seemingly almost every other Vietnam film ever made. Pretentious? Well, perhaps, but no fan of Coppola or the film should fail to be impressed by author Karl French's detail and brief vignettes that describe and explain the script, the characters, the actors, the locations, the real history, the Heart Of Darkness book by Joseph Conrad on which the main characters were based and, most deliciously, the rumours. Want to know about the five-hour version of the film? Who were those bunny girl dancers in the Playboy scene? Did Martin Sheen really have a heart attack in the middle of filming? Who was the original choice for Sheen's role as Captain Willard? How did the voiceover come to be such a central part of the movie's legend? And, of course, what was behind Coppola's decision to change the ending of the film? It's all in this book. And it's all in nice, bit-size pieces which means that as a bedside companion, it's unbeatable. Why not check out another fact about the film before falling asleep - why watch the film when you can use this book to help you dream about it!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Buy...with extreme prejudice 11 Jun 2009
In a word I found this book awful, far too much author opinion & not enough fact. All the "information" here can be found in far more palatable & informative way in any of the other Apocalypse Now books. Its bite size chunks seem almost an insult to the reader & a movie of such scope. Ultimately dull, & very incomplete, opinions on Blade Runner, The Doors, & The Clash are either nonsensical or laughable. It's one hell of a cash in, glad my copy was second hand so as not to encourage them with sales.
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