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Captain Ben Willard (Apocalypse Now)
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Snafu the Great
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Captain Ben Willard (Apocalypse Now)

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Martin Sheen as Captain Benjamin Willard.

Apocalypse Now is one hell of a epic film.

It is also pretty infamous for being a clusterfvck of a production.

Francis Ford Coppola attempted suicide, half of the cast and crew were either stoned or shitfaced half of the time (Dennis Hopper got Lawrence Fishburne hooked on heroin), and the aforementioned teenager was 14 at the time of shooting.

Oh, and the Hueys used in the 'Charlie Don't Surf' invasion scene were on loan from the Filipino government and had to be brought back in order to fight real communists.

And Martin Sheen (father to Charlie and Emilio) suffered a heart attack during production.

Sheen shines as Benjamin Willard, an Army officer who is more at home in the jungles of Vietnam rather than the real world. He gets called in on a black-ops mission from his superiors to track down and eliminate Colonel Walter E. Kurtz (Marlon Brando), who has gone batshit Murdock-level insane and is holed up in Cambodia with his own army who worship him as a god.

So he bums a ride upriver...and insanity ensues. Big time. With the help of Air Calvary commander (and surfing fanatic) Lt. Colonel Bill Kilgore, he gets his boat upriver, where after a series of sidetrips and detours, comes face-to-face with Kurtz himself.

[SPOILER - highlight to read]: Too bad it doesn't go too well for Kurtz in the end, as Willard picks up a machete and goes Jason Voorhees on him.

Trivia:
- Recognize the chopper pilot in the 'Charlie Don't Surf' invasion scene? That's R. Lee Ermey, pre-Full Metal Jacket. In an interesting sidenote, Ermey himself is a Vietnam vet and a former drill instructor.

- The scene in which Willard goes nuts inside his hotel room and punches out a mirror? Straight improv. Also helped that Coppola had Martin Sheen drink down a lot of whiskey before setting him inside the room and filming the results. Sheen punching the mirror was also improvised.

- Someone on the Call of Duty sure loved the phrase 'Charlie Don't Surf,' as it was the name of one of the levels in Modern Warfare.


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Old Post May 29th, 2011 08:20 AM
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Old Post Jun 3rd, 2011 11:36 PM
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