Distributed by Women Make Movies, 462 Broadway, New York, NY 10013; 212-925-0606
Produced by Kylie Grey and Marcus Gillizeau
Directed by Kylie Grey
DVD, color, 52 min.
Jr. High - Adult
Media Studies, Political Studies
Reviewed by Michael J. Coffta, Business Librarian, Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania
Date Entered: 5/19/2008
This fine work takes the form of a series of interviews and glimpses into the life of a female Iraqi translator and teacher who cooperated with the film makers before and after the U.S. invasion of Iraq. She did this without the consent of the Iraqi government and, along with her immediate family, offers unique perceptions of the Iraqi government, the U.S. occupation, and the future of Iraq. Before the invasion, the audience witnesses seemingly widespread want for U.S. intervention among those in Baghdad. Examples of graffiti include “Welcome U.S. Army.” After the invasion, however, the Iraqi translator desperately calls for more security, citing that an increase of looting and other crime. In the eyes of the interviewees, the armed resistance to US occupation, while random, has caused more death and destruction than Hussein’s regime. The film comes full circle by showing a piece of graffiti stating “Go home U.S. Army.”
While one may think that this work has a limited “shelf life” (the execution of Hussein is not mentioned), this documentary has an enduring quality that, for those examining the impact of the U.S. occupation, is tremendously revealing and personal. The examination provided by this film is extensive and moving. This film comes highly recommended to all audiences, middle school and up, for its devoted and emotive investigation and portrayal of life in war torn Baghdad.