Playing God

Francis Ford Coppola re-creates his Vietnam phantasmagoria

To balance out these crazy kids, we also have an amazing new sequence set in a misty, opulent French plantation. It's marvelous filmmaking -- august parlors lit with Parrish ochres -- with Willard falling under the seductive sway of a widow played by Aurore Clément while political debates and issues of territoriality storm about them. The adult sensuousness here is in itself adequate reason to check out Redux, but, as a point of contrast, it also enhances the olive drab and death reek with which the rest of the film is suffused.

Much like Brando's psychotic Col. Kurtz, a film director can be a deranged deity, bent on designing destinies. With Apocalypse Now Redux, it's a pleasure to report that Coppola has at last set right the world he created.

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