Friday, August 9, 2013

Body of War (Review)

In 2008 My friend Ellis recently went to a screening of Phil Donahue's new documentary Body of War. Here is a copy of an e-mail she sent me and others regarding the film:

I went to the screening of Ellen Spiro and Phil Donahue's Body of War yesterday evening, an unforgettable documentary about both the people who suffer as a result of today's sanitized/depersonalized war (thanks to military censorship and America's well-oiled media machine, readily obeying instructions from the Pentagon not to film soldiers' bodies coming home in coffins, etc.) and some of the ones who tried to stop it. Many of you will remember MSNBC fired Donahue even though his show was the network's highest rated one at the time (2003) due to his open anti-Iraq war stance.

Representatives from Iraq Veterans Against the War and Mr. Donahue were at the Century Landmark Cinema Theatre on Clark for Q&A last night after the screening. Even though the latter has been lobbying to get (PR) funding for and word out about the movie for 3.5 years, the majority of the press decided unsurprisingly to ignore him and, as expected, movie theaters concluded it would be in their best interest not to show this particular movie (not only because Iron Man or Narnia will generate more ticket sales ;) ).

Landmark has taken a huge risk to show Body of War in limited release in its theaters. I want to let you know you'll be able to go see it this week only (hopefully Landmark will generate enough ticket sales to allow for a longer period of time). If plenty of people start making noise their voices will eventually be heard, even in a country with both an interesting interpretation of Freedom of Speech and a longstanding tradition of pigeonholing anybody striving to open a dialogue about its military actions instead of silently disagreeing as "unpatriotic." This war has to stop.

Eddie Vedder devoted some of his time to write/compose two original songs for Body of War (at no cost); if you would be able to free up some of yours this upcoming week to go see it, I certainly hope you will.

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