Monday, March 12, 2007

Flags of Our Fathers / Letters from Iwo Jima

Flags of Our Fathers

It took me two or three weeks deciding if I was going or not to watch Flags of Our Fathers until I decided that I’ll give it a try… and I have to say that this is no war movie, this is an excellent dissection of heroism. But more, is about the American way that no matter what you have to do, you do it, because you have to reach your goal … any means to reach the end. And if by the way, you destroy the lives of the so-called heroes, well, they are casualties of war or at least very expendable!

Then in a more evident linear way, this is the story of the WWII Iwo Jima battle from the American perspective, based around that famous picture of the soldiers conquering a mount and raising the flag. The picture that became THE icon of the American bravery and determination.

It is quite entertaining, fast paced and once they raised the flag and took the picture, the story unravels and takes you inside.

Clint Eastwood did it again as a great storyteller (remember Million Dollar Baby?) telling a story about something that might be unappealing -war- and making it very appealing to all audiences.

Good film… but then Eastwood did a dual pic and told the story of the same battle from the Japanese perspective.

Letters from Iwo Jima

After watching Flags, I did not doubt at all and as soon as I was able I watched Letters from Iwo Jima.

I have not seen many American war films in my life, as if I can I will avoid them, but this is the best war movie I have ever seen! Yes, Letters from Iwo Jima is a war movie and you will feel all the pains that a war has.

Aside from Eastwood courage to film a Japanese story and in the original language, he has outdone himself with this mournful and difficult to watch movie and this masterpiece is a truthful, genuine, authentic and even sincere anti-war statement and for this I bow to him!

By telling the story of those doomed to be defeated, he has brilliantly portrayed the senseless and ridiculous absurdity of killing each other for the sake of… what??

Then, this movie is also an outstanding story about the human condition, but it is Eastwood directorial brilliant pace that makes this human condition so painful to watch.

Ken Watanabe and Kazunari Ninomiya have brilliant performances and Ms. Iris Yamashita screenplay is emotionally intense and excellent, and is just her first screenplay!

This is probably the best movie Eastwood has done –and I really liked Million Dollar Baby- lets hope he has more stories like this one to tell; he has become a legend with this film and if he keeps on like this he will reach the highest level and share it with of one of my most admired directors, Akira Kurosawa.

Absolutely a must be seen movie.

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