If you've ever wondered what ISAF and American forces are doing in Afghanistan, you're probably asking yourself the same questions as the soldiers over there. This documentary is a powerful, well cadenced and breathtaking insight into the life deployed servicemen in one of the most impoverished and dangerous place on Earth.
Restrepo explores the grim reality of a platoon in an isolated area, the Korengal valley, where they come under fire several times each and every day. This documentary focuses on the experience of the US soldiers, their feelings, their daily life, the difficulties they come across and the losses they have to endure. You will have an idea of what it is like to be deployed 15 months in a country with deeply rooted traditions, no access to the modern world, divided between resistance fighters and international forces. You will see the heavy toll it takes on soldiers, the hardship and mental sequels it left on them.
But missing from this movie is the Afghan side: civilians detained for no or few reasons, old grandpas questioned because they posses an old army jacket and families bombed or woke up by over-equipped finger-itchy-trigger finger foreign soldiers, promised projects that never come, a cow killed by hungry servicemen and its owner not even compensated… Different cultures, different standards.
In the end, the only thing that comes up to mind, is why.
Why are we there?
Why are we fighting an unwinnable war, who is by the way fought by young men in their 20's?
Why kill, maim and traumatise thousands for little more than vain ideologies and political reasons?
This movie doesn't answer those questions, but shows us what is really happening over there and should make us reflect on our current presence in Afghanistan.
About Carlito Riego
"Great perfection may appear imperfect, but its usefulness is inexhaustible. Great abundance may appear empty, but its usefulness cannot be exhausted. Great correctness may appear twisted, great skills appear crude, great eloquence appear awkward. Activity conquers cold; inactivity conquers heat. Clear serenity governs the world." - Lao Zi