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What are the best war documentaries that feature actual combat footage?

 
 
Reply Fri 15 Apr, 2011 11:18 pm
After seeing the limited US theatrical release of the Danish Afghan war documentary, Armadillo (2010), I was curious about what other war documentary that features actual combat footage (not reenactments) that you have seen that you admire or have been affected the most by?

Does it matter to you if the doc's subject war is still ongoing when you watch the documentary? Does it affect your opinion of the documentary? Or do you only watch war documentaries on armed conflicts that ended ages ago?

Does your preexisting political position on said war hinder your take on the political slant of the war documentary? Can you truly hold an open mind in regards to these subjects and their respective war documentaries?


Armadillo is so well produced: some of the best film editing and cinematography I've seen in years. The documentary is scored like a fiction based feature film. Quite sophisticated in its production values. The documentary follows a single unit's deployment to Afghanistan over a 6 month deployment and it culminates in a did the filmmakers witness (film) a war crime happening or not controversy.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1640680/
http://www.imdb.com/video/imdb/vi3554254105/
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Type: Discussion • Score: 4 • Views: 26,408 • Replies: 21
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DragotheWolf
 
  2  
Reply Mon 28 Nov, 2011 03:44 pm
@tsarstepan,
ARMADILLO is definitly a top contender for one of the best modern War Docs made to date. I have seen a few othes that are worth a watch as well. List to follow
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 28 Nov, 2011 03:53 pm
@tsarstepan,
Twelve O'Clock High is not bad - my father obtained the film for/edited the flight fight stuff. This won't show up on Imdb, but I assume it will on the actual film credits. I'd say that was quite early for that kind of thing.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 28 Nov, 2011 03:59 pm
@ossobuco,
Adds, I've seen a lot of other films or documentaries with real footage. Have to think about it.
0 Replies
 
DragotheWolf
 
  2  
Reply Mon 28 Nov, 2011 04:06 pm
@DragotheWolf,
1. Restrepo (2010) - A year in the shoes of a platoon in Afghanistan who erect a new operating base called "Restrepo", named after a fallen comrade. The team takes fire almost everyday, from mortars to machine gun. I heard the director was shot an killed in Libya while filming a new doc.

2. The War Tapes (2006) - Three members of a U.S Army unit carry cameras on their helmets and record a year in Iraq. As they guard KBR trucks from fire, witness real IED attacks, fire fights and a few humorous moments to do with waste trucks.

3. Gunner Palace (2005) - A US platoon takes over a former palace owned by one of Saddam's sons. Here they use it as a base while performing their duties as soldiers. A few fire fights, mortar attacks and a lot of one on one with the members of the unit themselves.

4. Why We Fight (2006) - A doc aimed at all the elements of war from the bomb makers themselves, to former members of the frontlines. Trying to look deep into the psychology of why we go to war, it features a very interesting historic speach by Eisenhower. Very imformative.

5. No End In Sight (2007) - Referring to the end of the Iraq occupation, a very deep look into what went wrong with the invasion of Iraq, who is responsible and who stood to make the most money. Top Notch.
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Mon 28 Nov, 2011 06:01 pm
We used to watch news reels.
I trust there is some archive somewhere!/?
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Mon 28 Nov, 2011 07:55 pm
@DragotheWolf,
Restrepo is a great film. Saw it at the movie theater on it's opening Friday. Powerful stuff.

I've seen No End in Sight and Why We Fight. Both film's touch on the military industrial complex. Something we as a country need to start dismantling or at least place a very very short leash on.

Thanks Dragothewolf. And a very big welcome to a2k.
NSFW (view)
DragotheWolf
 
  1  
Reply Tue 29 Nov, 2011 08:50 am
@tsarstepan,
Thank you. I couldn't resist signing up and replying to that post. Last night I watched Occupation Dreamland (2005) about Iraq. It wasn't the best I've seen but I was glad to have it.
0 Replies
 
daveID
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jun, 2013 02:00 pm
@DragotheWolf,
Very "real" site, thanks for the address. I also liked your original list of documentaries originally (2011?). Anyway, if you know of any other documentaries that are either politically on point or serious footage, please post it. Even though its June 2013, **** is still on, and the world is crazier than ever.
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 02:24 pm
@DragotheWolf,
DragotheWolf wrote:

1. Restrepo (2010) - A year in the shoes of a platoon in Afghanistan who erect a new operating base called "Restrepo", named after a fallen comrade. The team takes fire almost everyday, from mortars to machine gun. I heard the director was shot an killed in Libya while filming a new doc.

2. The War Tapes (2006) - Three members of a U.S Army unit carry cameras on their helmets and record a year in Iraq. As they guard KBR trucks from fire, witness real IED attacks, fire fights and a few humorous moments to do with waste trucks.

3. Gunner Palace (2005) - A US platoon takes over a former palace owned by one of Saddam's sons. Here they use it as a base while performing their duties as soldiers. A few fire fights, mortar attacks and a lot of one on one with the members of the unit themselves.

4. Why We Fight (2006) - A doc aimed at all the elements of war from the bomb makers themselves, to former members of the frontlines. Trying to look deep into the psychology of why we go to war, it features a very interesting historic speach by Eisenhower. Very imformative.

5. No End In Sight (2007) - Referring to the end of the Iraq occupation, a very deep look into what went wrong with the invasion of Iraq, who is responsible and who stood to make the most money. Top Notch.

Once again, I like to thank you for your help Drago. I wish I kept my original list (published on IMDb) but that was eventually forgotten and deleted over time. Using this thread to rebuild another attempt at a poll on IMDb's poll page.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 07:09 pm
@DragotheWolf,
Honey, my father flew over the center of the bomb, Baker. He was in charge of photo. That may have been done since, but was a major thing then.

He lived with all that, and so in my way did I.




I don't mean the 'honey' to be insulting.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 07:52 pm
@ossobuco,
I need to fill out the form to donate what I have from my father.

There will be willies, as my father ran into trouble by someone under him posting some bomb photo. I was nine, I am guessing.

Many years later..
When I engaged with the local nuclear museum, I liked the director, but he was unaware of baker et al, at all. I get it, jobs are different and he taught me some other stuff re things going on (I plan to give my stuff to them, but am slow, since I am expected to write up data to get visited.
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 08:37 pm
@ossobuco,
ossobuco wrote:

Honey, my father flew over the center of the bomb, Baker. He was in charge of photo. That may have been done since, but was a major thing then.

He lived with all that, and so in my way did I.

Are you saying your father was part of the test whom photographed the very famous (or infamous) underwater nuclear test in the Pacific Ocean? That's quite a bit of monumental history if that's correct.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 08:48 pm
@tsarstepan,
He was in the plane that shot into Baker from above, being in charge of photo.

Look up Baker.

Colonel John Craig was there too, if I remember right. Not sure.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 08:55 pm
@ossobuco,
Look up bikini bomb tests
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 08:58 pm
@ossobuco,
I'm familiar with the tests via several documentaries on the subject.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 09:10 pm
@tsarstepan,
Nobody had flown over the center of an exploding atom bomb before. Even Helen (forget the rest of her name, usually disagreed with her) told me he was highly exposed to rads, somehow verified the flight.


I happen to hate bombs myself and don't get me started on drones.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 09:33 pm
I have a couple of crossroads albums.

But damn, I have to fill out forms to donate them.

The very literate and nice director of the museum didn't know what I was talking about.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2014 09:40 pm
@tsarstepan,
He was head of photography. That is correct.
0 Replies
 
 

 
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