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Saturday, July 20, 2013

July Film Club: Documentary #2

Hey folks, thanks for those who were able to make it out to our film last Thursday.  For this coming Thursday, July 25th we will be watching the very moving, intense documentary entitled: Restrepo.

Restrepo is a 2010 documentary about the Afghanistan war, directed by American journalist Sebastian Junger and the late British/American photojournalist Tim Hetherington.  The film explores the year that Junger and Hetherington spent in Afghanistan on assignment for Vanity Fair, embedded with the Second Platoon, B Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment (airborne), 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team of the U.S. Army in the Korengal Valley.  The 2nd Platoon is depicted defending the Observation Post (OP) named after a platoon medic who was killed earlier in the campaign, PFC Juan Sebastian Restrepo, a Colombian-born naturalized U.S. citizen.  The film follows the 2nd Platoon of Battle Company on a 15-month deployment in the Korengal Valley of northeast Afghanistan in the Nuristan area.  The Korengal flows north to the Pech, which then flows east to the Kunar River valley on the border with Pakistan.  the film chronicles the lives of the men from their deployment to the time of their return home.  The Korengal Valley was at the time regarded as "the deadliest place on Earth" (as stated in the documentary itself, trailers, and television commercials on the National Geographic Channel).

The film received the Grand Jury Prize for best documentary at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival.  It received a certified fresh rating of 96% on Rotten Tomatoes.  The late Roger Ebert awarded the film four out of four stars.

This is one of the most intense films I've ever seen, and probably the truest portrayal of modern combat and military service you will ever experience outside of actually serving.  You won't want to miss this harrowing, wonderfully made documentary.

Here's the trailer:

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