Theatre of War
Teatro de guerra
Impact | Documentaries
Lola Arias’ film opens with a riveting monologue, and its hold on the viewer never lets up. She has gathered veterans of the Falklands/Malvinas war to tell their stories of battle and, in many cases, re-stage their actions. It’s a provocative mixture of theatre and gracefully staged documentary cinema, with men from both sides of the conflict coming together to commiserate, contemplate and, hopefully, heal. These rather charming and now wise middle-aged Brits and Argentines speak of violence, fear and confusion. Arias makes them, at different times, documentary subjects, actors and spectators, and with each shift in her methods the overall picture grows more and more fascinating. There is more than one path to truth and reconciliation.
The stars of the film are six particular ex-combatants, and they speak candidly—not only about their roles in the war, but also in the film. It’s another layer of reality, sitting on top of the testimony and the re-enactments to deepen our awareness of what we see and hear. Arias wants to move us, but also to make us think about what it means to make art out of reality; it’s an approach that exposes her own role in the process. This is a very hyperconscious movie, and more powerful for that.
"Witty, self-aware [and] cathartic…"—Jessica Kiang, Variety