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The Fog of War

The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara

Regie Errol Morris
USA, 2003

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It is the story of America as seen through the eyes of the former Secretary of Defense, Robert S. McNamara. One of the most controversial and influential figures in world politics, he takes us on an insider’s view, from the bombing of Japan to the rise of American industry to the war in Vietnam.

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The Fog of War Regie Errol Morris


As Morris said, during an interview with Terry Gross “there are actually two characters: the 85-year-old McNamara speaking to the 45-year-old McNamara.” And, he might hasten to note the conflict between them. The division is crucial. As both a perpetrator and a witness, there is the atavistic struggle between testifying in one’s own defense, and trying to honestly bear witness.
December 31, 2014
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There’s something undeniably masterful about the film, which also includes archival footage, but that mastery is what sticks in my craw: it’s a capacity to say as little as possible while giving the impression of saying a great deal, a skill shared by McNamara and Morris. I’m not sure what we have to gain from this—the satisfaction that we’re somehow taking care of business when we’re actually fast asleep?
January 22, 2004
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