Waltz with Bashir
There are things in my Netflix queue that are honestly there because I was watching an awards show or reading a list of winners and just added things to my queue. That is how Vals Im Bashir got into my queue. All I remember about this addition to the list was that it was award winning and about a war. Maybe. I was expecting it to be brutal. Just not in the way that is was.
Writer/Director Ari Folman interviewed other veterans from the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon in order to help him fill in the gaps in his memory. As he tells a friend of his early on in the CGI film, "Its just not recorded into my system." He has a dream that seems to be about something that happened to him in the war and in order to put it together he discusses with other veterans their experiences of what happened. The film is a series of mini-stories, each one representing a memory of another veteran, all of them leading up to a comparison between things that happened during that war to other past atrocities and the suggestion that one might not be able to remember something because they don't want to admit to a role (even a minor one) that they may have played in it.
This film was shocking and a little heartbreaking. It wasn't a complete history of the events of the invasion of Lebanon; it wasn't comprehensive in its discussion what happened and why, but I think it is a pretty good chronicle of what some of the soldiers on the Israeli side went through and felt and how that has since effected their lives.
And, this might seem like an unfair or inappropriate comparison, but it reminded me a little of the Blind Spot, in that we take part in these things and we don't think about their consequences and then later we sit down and unravel some of what has happened and are presented with a picture that is dark and of which we are baffled, angered, upset and ashamed. I am happy that this movie was CGI animation and not live action, because it was difficult enough to sit through as it is. I think that a live action film would have cut into the film's ability to get the message across.
This is a good film and I'm glad I watched it. But, it was heart-breaking and there may have been tears (I admit to nothing).