Monday, July 25, 2016

A War

A Danish military outpost gets involved in the local community, as does the Taliban, things get messy and people die. Like Tobias Lindholm’s previous film A Highjacking he keeps parallel story lines running and interlacing, using international phone calls filmed from both ends. One story line in familiar territory (Denmark) and the other in exotic territory (in this case Afghanistan).

While focusing in close on the banalities of his character's lives Tobias Lindholm gets us to identify with people even if their situations are completely foreign to us. This tight focusing on particular characters also clearly divides the cast (and the world) into us and them. He then jerks the curtain aside to expose our own prejudices.

I didn't find this film as tense or as interesting as A Highjacking. The domestic life in Denmark was boring and the message of the film was hammered home with the subtlety of a hammer blow. Who are the NATO soldiers in Afghanistan actually fighting for? Does it work? Who are they trying to protect? What, if anything, is the life of an Afghan civilian worth? But the film was well acted and the characters believable, even if the message is one of despair.

Ian's rating 3/5 Anne's rating 2.5/5

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