Movie List
Loading ...
Find Theaters and Movie Times
Search Movies

Body of War

Poetic Americana
By GERALD PEARY  |  April 9, 2008
3.5 3.5 Stars
Body of War

Tomas Young volunteered for the US Army right after 9/11, hoping to be sent to Afghanistan and chase down Osama bin Laden. Instead, he was packed off to Iraq, another victim of the Bush administration’s lie about Saddam Hussein and al-Qaeda. Five days after his arrival, Young was shot; he suffered spinal damage and was paralyzed from the chest down. For several years of cinéma-vérité, Ellen Spiro and TV’s Phil Donahue tracked Young back home in America, as the bitter young Missourian became an obsessive anti-war activist, traveling the country in a wheelchair to tell his story.

Body of War is a powerful film, an important personal and political document. There’s Young’s absorbing family tale — his liberal mom, his Bush-loving stepdad, his militarist brother — and also his struggle to make a marriage go when his body parts won’t cooperate. And there’s Young on the national scene, as a meeting is arranged with ancient West Virginia senator Robert Byrd, who fought eloquently in Washington to stop the invasion of Iraq. This coming together of two pacifist warriors, both hobbling through life, is stirring and poetic Americana, like something from a great John Ford epic. 87 minutes | Kendall Square

Related: Review: Lark and Termite, It came from the sink, War all the time, More more >
  Topics: Reviews , Al Qaeda, Terrorism, War and Conflict,  More more >
| More

Most Popular
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   REVIEW: LIKE SOMEONE IN LOVE  |  March 12, 2013
    A decent little movie, but hardly a major one, from Iran's master filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami, who, self-exiled, here shoots in Tokyo with an all-Japanese cast.
  •   REVIEW: THE GATEKEEPERS  |  February 26, 2013
    Great cinema journalism, The Gatekeepers was the National Society of Film Critics' winner for Best Documentary of 2012.
  •   REVIEW: THE LITTLE FUGITIVE (1953)  |  February 27, 2013
    It's the 60th anniversary of this pioneering American independent feature, which greatly influenced both cinema vérité documentarians and the French New Wave.
  •   REVIEW: HOW TO RE-ESTABLISH A VODKA EMPIRE  |  February 20, 2013
    Daniel Edelstyn launched this film project after reading the spirited diary of his late grandmother, Maroussia Zorokovich, whose wealthy Jewish family split from Ukraine as the Bolsheviks were taking control.
  •   REVIEW: HAPPY PEOPLE: A YEAR IN THE TAIGA  |  February 12, 2013
    What Robert Flaherty did with title cards in his silent Nanook of the North , Werner Herzog manages with declamatory voiceover in Happy People : romanticization of the austere, self-reliant lives of hunters and trappers in the icebound north.

 See all articles by: GERALD PEARY