Thursday, September 3, 2009

War Collection- Intimate Enemies/Brotherhood/9th Company


Intimate Enemies

The brutal legacy of the Algerian war forms the heart of filmmaker Florent Emilio Siri's stark period drama concerning a young French soldier confronted by the horrors of war. Lieutenant Terrien (Benoît Magimel) has been dispatched to one of the most remote regions of Algeria to replace an officer who was killed in a recent skirmish. But this war is much more complicated than Lieutenant Terrien ever anticipated, and before long he is forced to confront a World War II French Army veteran willing to kill the soldiers with whom he once served in order to secure the independence of his birthplace. When the fellaghas (Algerian national fighters) massacre an entire village in retaliation for a visit from the French, Lieutenant Terrien vows to remain calm and professional despite the unspeakable horrors that greet him with each passing day. On the other side of the coin is battle-hardened Sergeant Dougnac (Albert Dupontel), a soldier who has seen more than his fair share of combat and stands firm in the belief that this brand of brutality can only be confronted with equal measures of barbarity. Later, Lieutenant Terrien meets a young boy who miraculously survived the massacre of his village and is forced to see the conflict through the innocent eyes of a child.

Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War

Korea's leading filmmaker,
Kang Je-gyu, directed this epic-scale drama focusing on two brothers caught up in the madness of the war that tore their nation apart in the early '50s. Jin-seok Lee (Weon Bin) is a bright and well-educated young man whose older and more physically imposing brother Jin-tae Lee (Jang Dong-gun) believes he represents the best hope for his family's future. When both Jin-seok and Jin-tae are called up to fight in the South Korean army following the advance of Communist forces, a wary Jin-tae cuts a deal with his commanding officer -- if he racks up an impressive enough record on the battlefield, the army will give Jin-seok an early release. Jin-tae proves to be a fearless soldier, and is soon recognized as a war hero, but as the conflict wears on, he develops an unhealthy enthusiasm for the violence of the battlefield, and Jin-seok finds himself questioning his big brother's actions, both as a soldier and as a member of his family. The title Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War refers to the Korean name for the South Korean flag, originally designed in 1876 but outlawed during Japanese rule of the nation, and restored to use in 1948.

9th Company

Fedor Bondarchuk, the son of noted Russian filmmaker Sergei Bondarchuk, debuts as a director with the harrowing and relentless military drama 9th Company, set between 1988 and 1989 at the tail end of the U.S.S.R. Afghani war (the Soviet equivalent of Vietnam). The picture opens in Krasnoyarsk, Siberia, in late 1988, when military trainees Petrovsky, Ryaba, Chugun, Stas, Pinochet, Lyutev and Vorobyev are whipped into shape at a training camp by the brutal, sadistic commander, Warrant Officer Dygalo - prior to being sent off to the front lines. After several one-by-one dalliances with the local whore, Snow White, and a cautionary lecture on the history, geography and culture of Afghanistan (which most of the men sleep through), the trainees head off to battle - first to the Bagram air base, then to the Afghani province of Khost to secure supply lines. But nothing can begin to prepare them for the brutal devastation into which they are plunged, or the relentless tide of slaughter that scatters thousands of Soviet victims in its wake.


No comments: