FIND MOVIES
Movie List
Loading ...
or
Find Theaters and Movie Times
or
Search Movies

Review: The Oath

An indictment on the War on Terror
By PETER KEOUGH  |  June 9, 2010
3.5 3.5 Stars

 

The oath referred to is that swearing fealty to Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden. Abu Jandal, who served as the leader's bodyguard from 1996 to 2000, took the oath. His brother-in-law Salim Hamdan, who worked as a paid driver and mechanic for the group, didn't. Hamdan ended up in Gitmo; Jandal ended up on TV, giving interviews to 60 Minutes and Al-Arabiya about his days with OBL.

You might recognize Hamdan's name from the landmark 2006 Supreme Court case Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, which declared unconstitutional the Bush administration's high-handed approach to trying accused terrorists. Laura Poitras's complex documentary takes up the story as Hamdan is hauled before a military tribunal on new laws drummed up by Congress especially for his case.

The film intercuts that trial with Jandal's guilt-ridden reflections while he drives a cab in Yemen; the result is compelling both as drama and as an indictment of the eight years of folly known as the War on Terror.

  Topics: Reviews , Politics, Politics, U.S. Politics,  More more >
| More


Most Popular
ARTICLES BY PETER KEOUGH
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   BUFFET DINING: THE 15TH BOSTON UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL  |  March 19, 2013
    "Copraphagy" is a key word at this year's Boston Underground Film Festival at the Brattle.
  •   REVIEW: GINGER & ROSA  |  March 19, 2013
    Sally Potter likes to mess around with form and narrative.
  •   UNDERGROUND CINEMA: THE 12TH BOSTON TURKISH FILM FESTIVAL  |  March 12, 2013
    This year's Boston Turkish Film Festival includes works in which directors ponder the relationships between the secular and the religious, between men and women, and between destiny and identity.
  •   REVIEW: A GLIMPSE INSIDE THE MIND OF CHARLES SWAN III  |  March 12, 2013
    In Roman Coppola's sophomoric second feature (his 2001 debut CQ was promising), Charlie Sheen shows restraint as the titular asshole, a dissolute ad designer and solipsistic whiner who's mooning over the loss of his latest love.
  •   REVIEW: UPSIDE DOWN  |  March 14, 2013
    Had Ed Wood Jr. directed Fritz Lang's Metropolis , he couldn't have achieved the earnest dopiness of Juan Solanas's sci-fi allegory — nor the striking images.

 See all articles by: PETER KEOUGH