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Saturday, April 23, 2011

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This was difficult to watch, but necessary. It always astounds me how much power there is in a gun. A gun in the hands of a child wearing flip flops. Once again, I think this denotes my overwhelming sense that nothing can change until we change the culture. In my opinion, until it is no longer acceptable to behave this way, against anyone, including your own people, nothing can change.

On a cinematography note, I thought the use of the camera upside down was an amazing viewpoint, as were so many of the effects used throughout with movement and blending. The end sequence terrified me. I want to go and rescue those women.

Hetherington makes it difficult to aware these days. We are so much wiser for his work.
Peace.

I watched it and was afraid practically the whole time. What a sheltered life I lead. You're right - the actual plus the artistic can be considered. I like how the gun toters smiled and then the smile faded. The End is Near is poignant. Loved the fan and sheets. Laugh at how universal curse words are. And I sit back and think my life is so sheltered and sweet and if I think it is difficult I should remember the girls begging for the basics. I hated the mean rifle toter who shot to scare others. I wish he had caught a shot of the security in London at the American embassy and Saudi embassy. I was there last month and to see guns in London was shocking to me. Thank you for sharing this. Awareness. Courage to (have) work(ed) in those conditions, that is for sure. Thank God for people like TH.

Here kid, here's a t-shirt and a gun, now go kill somebody. When you look at that as compaired to say the armed services in North America and how anyone from here gets training and flack jackets and things like that, it's unbelieveable that someone would hand a child a t-shit and a gun and off they go.

I've read alot about wars and genocides in Africa, trying to understand even slightly the nature of the culture of violence there. I just can't seem to grasp it, other than to say the baseline for it is poverty and violence has become the accepted norm for survival over generations.

I was struck by the repetition of patterns, especially in the sequence of roads, where one road in one country, morphed into another until you almost couldn't descern one from another. It's probably how it must have felt for him sometimes, waking up and trying to remember where he was and what day it was.

I also thought the sequence where the peephole transitioned into the moon was interesting. It was like within and without, nothing changes-he was showing another pattern. We all carry our travels with us. I think this film was what the roadmaps looked like in his head.

The contrast between his home life and his assignments must have felt so odd. To transition from being in the middle of hell, to being at home with his child must have been confusing at times. It takes a certain kind of person to be able to live on the edge like that.

what i thought while watching was what a brave man to try and capture what he saw and how he says that this was his way to try and make sense of it and what a good job he did of showing the humanity in all the people. the ones with guns the ones without. really excellent film making. his point of view is fascinating. the film is poetic. i like the way he doesn't TELL. he shows through that gorgeous camera work what his eyes saw, what his ears heard, what he felt. that camera lens as an extension of his heart. most of all the way he avoided cliche. and his talking on the phone at the end...about hope, he can't quite finish that sentence. the bigness of it can't be captured with words. and the woman who leaves the messages on the answering machine, the little dog in the sunlit field, his life with the liberian people, the way he witnessed all of that. loved. it. all.

oh, it leaves me profoundly sad. the loss, the waste, the brutality that breeds more brutality and the knowing that western countries have set the stage for so much of what is happening by stripping Africa of resources and providing those hateful weapons. i mean, where does a young boy get a real gun that he can flaunt like that?

on an artistic note it was brilliant of course. the editing contrasting 2 different realities, the sound, the lack of sound, the terrifying implications of what wasn't shown. i am reeling.

thank you Mary Ann.

I saw Restrepo, and it reinforced the waste and pointlessness of war. I'm a veteran, married to a 3-war combat veteran, and we are both opposed to war in every place and every form. Thanks for bringing this video to our attention.

I am not much on analyzing things--I mainly go with my gut and shoot from the hip. My gut is deeply saddened that this is the way of life for so many men, women, and children. Thank God we live in America. If more Americans watched that incredible documentary, maybe we would have fewer people complaining about how "tough" we have it here in our country. "Is there any hope....?" There has to be.

Wow...okay I have to process this. It reminds me of the movie "The Empire in Africa"...very hard to watch because you just do not want to beleive that any human being can treat one another this way. I don't know how anyone can be around this environment for over 10 years and remain hopeful. I also support NURU which is another chairity that was started by a former veteran who knows that war is not the answer. We have to stop poverty in order to find peace. Starving, hungry people of all races will do whatever they have to to survive...even kill another.

I am without appropriate words to match the power of this film - anything I could say feels so trivial!!

While the subject material makes me very sad and somewhat hopeless I was struck by Hetherington's comment towards the end of the film. He was looking to document, understand and find hope in the midst of hopelessness - what an amazing life purpose! I am reminded of Dan Eldon and his journals - he was much the same.

As for the mechanics of the film - I loved the push and pull, the contrast of anxiety and tranquilty... never quite knowing what was going on or what might happen - the constant tension - very real!! The movement, angles, transitions - I felt like I was really on the ride.

It is sad to think that his voice has been silenced - he had so much to say. Makes me wonder how on earth the human species has survived????

Thanks for sharing this Mary Ann - very thought provoking.

Wow. I'm glad I watched this. It was hard to watch...very heartbreaking. He documents people trying to care or find a reason to care in the midst of such violence, hunger, desperation and heartache. For some caring means taking up a weapon. They think they're going to make a difference. They're all trying to understand and trying to find hope. Tim's use of transitioning between settings and events is what helps hold the whole piece together. Very brilliant and thoughtful.

THANKS for posting this. I didn't want to watch it but it was important that I did. Why do we do this to each other? I will never understand. And I feel so helpless and stupid because I have no idea how to make it better, to change things.

Wow. This film is powerful stuff.

The boy is smiling. The camera zooms in on the sticker on his gun; a picture of a warrior, a hero. Two raalities are captured in a way that needs no words.

... Two realities

This is our World. Day in, Day out, Year in, Year out, Ever and Ever and Ever and Ever. You watch this film - do you have any idea how many battles are going on globally while these 19 minutes go by. I hate to say it, but until nobody profits from war and the power obsessed have nowhere to go, this will be the World's history forever.

Deeply moving and disturbing. I am touched in many places, I can't fully grasp why it takes so many lifetimes to learn that war is the underbelly of our existance, that we cannot gain but only loose. I do believe that as long as we can gather and share in this kind of forum that we know hope exists, that there are those of us that will hold together and stand up and say no more, not on my watch, we gather and we pray and we hold our hearts open and absorb what we can not fully understand. Thanks for sharing this Mary Ann! Thank You.

I'm moved, I'm bothered, I'm made anxious by what I have just watched. So moving. How can you watch this and not be changed. What was I impacted by? The women, the children, the cell phone messages from someone who cared about him, the sounds. You could almost smell the places. It didn't matter that there were no definitive clues as to where he was exactly which made the point that it is the WORLD in crisis, not just isolated places.

What do we do about these things? The older I become, the fewer answers I have. Back in the 70's when all the answers were so simple to me: if we share our bounties and love one another, everything will be fine...ring so hollow now. But I want to hold on to those simple answers, are they really wrong.

Thank you Mary Ann.

This is an amazing, amazing piece of work. I had read of Tim's passing a few weeks ago, and had never heard of him before, but I remember thinking that it is all too familiar that journalists just trying to do their job face death and sometimes fall to it. Seeing this makes me wish I had known so much more about him. The cinematography, the contrasts, but yet the parallel use of imagery. His use of the beautiful colors of the sunrise as viewed by the soldiers with the smoke coming up around them. This was a stark, poignant, rich, and heartfelt film. I am so glad that I watched it, and so glad that you shared it. War, no matter where or when, is always at its root about economics - the have, and the have not. We have no idea as we carry on with our normal lives what reality is in many parts of the world. Thank you Mary Ann for helping his voice and the voice of others be heard.

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