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WAR FILMS

by Kenji
A selective list. Alphabetically, most essential first. Too many films- whether through nationalist fervour or inadvertently- glamourise, glorify and effectively promote war. I’ve included a few “Boys’ Own”’ type entertainments (e.g The Great Escape, The Dirty Dozen), some which give mixed messages (eg The Deer Hunter) and some quite patriotic statements (e.g Alexander Nevsky), but hope this list does more to discourage than promote war. The White Balloon from Iran is not a war film but should serve as an antidote to current warmongers, just as some superb (indigenous) Vietnamese films should be required viewing for those who’ve preferred to… Read more

A selective list. Alphabetically, most essential first. Too many films- whether through nationalist fervour or inadvertently- glamourise, glorify and effectively promote war. I’ve included a few “Boys’ Own”’ type entertainments (e.g The Great Escape, The Dirty Dozen), some which give mixed messages (eg The Deer Hunter) and some quite patriotic statements (e.g Alexander Nevsky), but hope this list does more to discourage than promote war. The White Balloon from Iran is not a war film but should serve as an antidote to current warmongers, just as some superb (indigenous) Vietnamese films should be required viewing for those who’ve preferred to dehumanise an enemy.

Along with a few admired films i’ve not seen, I’ve included the Cuban masterpiece Lucia, for the first part of the triptych, and almost hallucinatory scenes of lacerating angst and power (a precursor to the harrowing Come and See).

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