Posts Tagged ‘War Films’

2fd06dc1755d9f958747442fa58cec57The poster art for Drones features a 21st-century soldier deep in The Suck, a M16 rifle with grenade launcher at the ready and a Batman utility belt strapped around his mid-section. A female soldier with a daintier weapon and a few packs less ammo follows him. The sky is filled with unmanned aerial vehicles and tracer fire. “THE WAR OF THE FUTURE IS UP IN THE AIR,” we’re told.


Anyone purchasing a cinema ticket, DVD, or on-demand rental based on that nonsensical graphic, which is nothing more than video game cover art, should be entitled to a full refund plus compensation. (more…)

ImageThe familiar story of the soldier trapped behind enemy lines, who against all odds must somehow traverse hostile territory, while outwitting and outfighting those bent on capturing or killing him, continues to be the basis for films for one simple reason: it works.

The twist in ’71, a UK entry seen in the 64th Berlinale Film Festival competition in February, is that the setting is something less than war, yet somehow more terrifying. Director Yann Demange sets his first feature in Belfast, Northern Ireland in 1971, when sectarian violence was spiraling out of control and the growing number of British troops being introduced were adding gasoline to the fire. (more…)

ImageThough the war stories of Afghanistan and Iraq are still being written, the overarching theme is increasingly clear. This generation’s tales will not be of heroism, although that has been on display, or cowardice, although that is inevitable, or of atrocities, triumphs, intrigue, or geopolitical struggle. The ground truth of these conflicts as reflected in the movies already made and those still to be filmed is ambiguity. Setting aside the motivations – real or supposed – for the onset of hostilities, the question of whether the noble commitment of bringing freedom to oppressed people through armed intervention by outsiders is possible or whether the definitions of freedom, oppression and commitment differ so greatly across cultures that the matter can never be resolved will continue to overshadow a more traditional military cinematic narrative.

This maddening, unresolvable ambiguity is at the moral heart of Zwischen Welten (Between Worlds), a simple, powerful tale of one German army unit’s experience in Afghanistan as seen through its squad leader. (more…)