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  • This chapter is unavailable for purchase
  • Print publication year: 2009
  • Online publication date: June 2014

Chapter 6 - Religion and Postmodernity (Part B): Hyper-reality and the Internet

  • Adam Possamai, University of Western Sydney
  • Publisher: Acumen Publishing
  • pp 82-94



In the Redux version of the war movie Apocalypse Now by Francis Ford Coppola, 49 minutes have been added. Part of the extra footage is a surrealist scene that is perfectly appropriate to illustrate this chapter. Three Playboy playmates are touring various army camps during the Vietnam War to boost the morale of the US soldiers. They become stranded with their manager in an almost deserted camp in the pouring rain. Their helicopter, which has run out of fuel, cannot take them away from this hellish situation. The antiheroes of this story, a small group of soldiers going up a Cambodian river on a secret mission, find them and offer their assistance. The soldiers bargain to spend two hours with them in return for a couple of barrels of fuel – two hours beyond having a cup of tea in their company. One of these soldiers is alone with Miss May who shows him what she offered to the camera for the Playboy magazine. He is in awe about having an intimate moment with a woman whom he has been fantasising about for so long. Holding the almost worshipped copy of the magazine, he is more concerned with the pictures that made her famous than the reality of her naked body. He asks her to pose in exactly the same way as she did in the magazine, and to wear the same wig, so that reality can replicate these pictures, rather than the other way around.