If your an intelligence officer during the Vietnam War when you are on R and R your probably hanging out in a hotel room getting drunk and high and waiting on your next mission. You see your an assassin, or an errand boy for the Generals. Your the man they go to when they want someone taken out and killed.
Captain Willard (Martin Sheen) was an intelligence officer and he would get the mission of a lifetime. He was given a mission to take out Colonel Walter E. Kurtz (Marlon Brando). A highly decorated army colonel who has taken it upon himself to form an army of captured enemy soldiers and villagers who look up to him as a God.
Willard will make his way upriver in a gunboat captained by Chief Phillips (Albert Hall). Among his crew are Chef Hicks (Frederic Forrest) , Lance Johnson (Sam Bottoms), and Clean Miller (Laurence Fishburne).
To get where they need to go, they first need to have the boat airlifted to the mouth of the river by Lt. Kilgore (Robert Duvall) and his men. He is in charge of an air mobile group and they will simply pick up the boat and put it down just where they want it.
Captain Willard is going to go deep in the jungle to have to find Kurtz and when he does the things he will see will make him never want another mission again. The jungles of Southeast Asia had really old beliefs. For instance, Kurtz had been told to inoculate some children in a village so they wouldn't get sick. This was supposed to be a good thing. The head of the village ordered all of the children's arms to be cut off from where the shots were given. The thought of all those innocent children having to endure this and as an American to have witnessed it would zap your brain in such a way that it would or could drive you insane.
Is this a true story, no. Could this be a true story, possibly. Director Francis Ford Coppola knew he had a good movie. He knew that it would be the talk of the town. What he didn't know was that it would become one of the greatest war movies of all time. This launched the careers of several of it's cast. If you have never seen the movie then you must take the time to look at it for what it is. Entertainment for one and war at it's simplest terms, killing. Pure and simple kill or be killed and doing it by following orders.