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Established 1995 filmfestivals.com serves and documents relentless the festivals community, offering 92.000 articles of news, free blog profiles and functions to enable festival matchmaking with filmmakers.

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Why War? answers by Full Frame Documentary Film Fesitval

FULL FRAME’S 2005 SPECIAL CURATED PROGRAM: WHY WAR?

A consideration of the causes of war that Filmfestivals fully supports

The Full Frame Documentary Film Fesitval’s special curated program for their eighth annual festival examines the motivations and justifications for war. Why War?, curated by Cara Mertes, Executive Director of P.O.V./American Documentary, Inc., hopes to facilitate a different kind of dialogue about war and its causes with the role of the artist in a time of war as a central question. Festival founder Nancy Buirski says, "We wanted to take a close look at this subject that surrounds us everyday in the news and ask some hard questions about the nature of war and culture. This is a program we are very excited about—Cara Mertes has assembled some of the most thought-provoking films out there and panelists who will take what we see on the screen to another level."


In a series of eight programs, Why War? will look at the grounds for, and the implications of, war as considered by an international selection of filmmakers and writers whose work and words are interconnected through shared influences.

Walter Mosley’s award Seeds of War is given annually to the film and filmmakers who best explore the issues behind conflict and give voice to those whose lives have been most affected. Following the screening of Patricio Guzman’s The Battle of Chile (Part 2): The Coup d’Etat (1976), Mosley will join Chilean-born author, poet and playwright Ariel Dorfman (Death and the Maiden, Speak Truth to Power) to speak about war’s relationship to art, specifically the mediums of poetry, theatre and film. Ariel Dorfman will also be the moderator of the Artists in a World at War panel, an extension of the Why War? program, which will consider the documentary filmmaker’s role as “witness” to global strife, conflict, and warfare. Why War? curator, Cara Mertes, will be on the panel.

Eugene Jarecki will present his documentary Why We Fight (2005), a film that just won the American Documentary Grand Jury Prize at Sundance. Jarecki’s Why We Fight is a powerful essay on American foreign policy in the age of the military-industrial complex. Peter Raymont’s Shake Hands with the Devil: The Journey of Roméo Dallaire (2004), an audience-award winner for Best World Documentary at Sundance, documents the experience of a small group of UN Representatives, led by Canadian Lieutenant General Roméo Dallaire, who stayed during the 1994 Rwanda massacre to offer protection to the few people they could save as the genocide unfolded around them.


A rarely-screened feature-length documentary, Winter Soldier (1972), made by fifteen independent filmmakers of Winter Soldier Collective is part of the Why War? program. Winter Soldier captures the terrifying testimonies of more than 200 ex-GIs at the 1971 Detroit Winter Soldier Investigation concerning American atrocities in Vietnam, and is both riveting and repulsive in its evocation of the pain and hypocrisy that that war has come to represent. The devastating testimony of individual soldiers offers insights into the causes and repercussions of war which resonate more sharply every day. For a generation for whom Vietnam is simply a name and a story in a history book, the visceral quality of the testimony is both specific to the Vietnam experience, and universal to the experience of war.

Why War? received support from the Academy Foundation of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the North Carolina Arts Council.
Recommended by filmfestivals.com
Bruno Chatelin

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