Saturday, November 01, 2008
Willard: I was going to the worst place in the world and I didn't even know it yet. Weeks away and hundreds of miles up a river that snaked through the war like a main circuit cable - plugged straight into Kurtz. It was no accident that I got to be the caretaker of Colonel Walter E. Kurtz's memory - any more than being back in Saigon was an accident. There is no way to tell his story without telling my own. And if his story really is a confession, then so is mine.
I don't think I truly understood what Coppola was trying to say with this scene until I became a father myself. Then when I saw it gain I froze with horror at the realisation of what it actually meant and how wrong I'd been up till then. The few moments of peace before the attack when the Vietnamese children line up to clamber into their underground shelter brought home to me the real meaning of the movie.