An old friend tells director Ari about a recurring nightmare in which he is chased by 26 vicious dogs. They conclude that this is connected to their Israeli Army mission in the 1982 Lebanon War. Ari realises that he can’t remember anything about it. Intrigued, he decides to search for his memories.
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Incredible animation - both visually and sonically. Deeply political and, for obvious reasons, timely. A fascinating historically-driven exposition of the darkness and complexity of both warfare and the traumatic reverberations that occur in the Soldier's memory and subconscious.
War is hell. Nobody wins, except the people who sell the planes/bombs/helicopters/guns/bullets. Volvo makes the engines for many NATO/USA war planes, they are big winners, too. Also General Electric, Boeing, McDonnell Douglas, Lockheed, Pratt and Whitney, FMC, to name but a few war profiteers. Everyone in the Middle East has PTSD. This film is largely about that. A very serious piece of animation, not for kids.
Whatever your viewpoint on the matter, wherever you are from, whoever you sympathize with, you just have to watch this movie. This is the Israeli war machine at its smallest components, on the level of those who fire the bullets and then forget about it.
This film does more than provide an accurate representation of traumatic experiences. It taps into the unconscious, appropriately leaves blanks for the mind to fill in, and makes clever use of devices to alternate between enveloping the viewer and displacing the viewer (as the soldiers supposedly had felt). A stunning example of animation that feels more real than even amateur live footage of war.
This was only the second film that touched me so much that it made me cry in the end. What a stunning story, beautifully done in form of an animation, yet a very heartfelt journey of a director, who dares tackle his past, which is not always an easy thing to do. I take my hat off to Ari Folman.