Review: Brothers at War


I saw a sneak preview of a new Iraq war documentary "Brothers at War" a couple weeks ago and since it's showing up in limited theaters this weekend, I thought I'd fill you in on my impressions of the film.

First of all, it's one of the few films about Iraq that is manifestly a-political. This isn't another "Soldiers as victims" screed or an anti-Bush tirade...there have been plenty of those.

Instead, this is a sincere look through a big brother's eyes of what his family is doing in the war and what motivates them to keep going.

Jake Rademacher embeds with several units in Iraq over two different trips to get an idea from a layman of what it's like there and the lives of troops who patrolled the violence every day. None of his reportage has the editorial arrogance of a war correspondent journalist (myself included) and it speaks to a rawness that's compelling.

A lot of you who've been to Iraq will like the little details of his travels: the mean KBR employees hassling you about bag size, the boring days on end at an LP/OP and the poop games the Joes like to play, the competition for who's seen the most bang bang, the frustration with Iraqi troops and their spray and pray mentality...

But at the end of the day, Rademacher touches a nerve when he uncovers a world that only his serving brothers will know and recognizes that the loyalty to their fellow Joes is every bit as thick as the blood of true brothers.

"Brothers at War" will be released in limited theaters throughout the country starting tomorrow, and I'd encourage anyone who can to check it out.

-- Christian

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