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A Comparison of Heart of Darkness and Apocalypse Now Joseph Conrads epic novel Heart of Darkness depicts the discrepancy between ideals and realities against the sinister backcloth of the complete incomprehensibility of the wild jungle It is an expos of the corruptness and absurdity of the progress and enlightenment of nineteenth century Europe and ultimately of man himself It tells the story of Marlow who takes a journey down the Congo River into the core of the jungle of Africa searching for this mysterious genius named Kurtz The journey confronts him with the rudimentary savagery and incomprehensibility of mankind Three quarters of a century later during the turmoil of the Vietnam War a young film maker by the name of Francis Ford Copola made a movie that was parallel to the book Heart of Darkness essentially a modern version of it He set it against the backdrop of the ever controversial Vietnam War and entitled it Apocalypse Now The movie tells of a soldier Captain Willard traveling down a river into the hell hole of the Earth the jungles of Vietnam in search of a mad man named Kurtz Along the way he is confronted by the absurdity brutality meaninglessness and inconceivable nature of mankind In the end both Marlow and Willard are faced with the choice of two nightmares that of banal evil or that of insane evil The two works each considered classics in their own medium are most visibly comparable through the three parallels that of the United States Army and the company that of the people that work and fight for these institutions and that of the main characters of each story Marlow and Willard and Kurtz and Kurtz The two essential institutions in the book and the movie are the company and the United States Army The US Army and the men that work for it in the movie are the parallel of the company and the men that work
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