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LAist Movie Review: Restrepo

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For a war that is nearing the decade mark, Afghanistan sure does fly under the radar. Lindsay Lohan’s SCRAM or the follies of modern athletes are likely to receive as much or more air time than armed conflicts involving our own neighbors, friends, and family members taking place in some hard-to-fathom hovel. In fact, compiled television news data from 2008 shows us that the Afghanistan campaign netted just over 1% of total airtime. Not exactly in-your-face journalism.

So when Restrepo opens with the desert-weary Humvee housing filmmakers Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger being rocked by a roadside IED, it can be quite a jolt. The audio cuts out, the camera falls in and out of focus, showing us on screen exactly how we feel inside: disoriented. And that gut-clenching fearfulness doesn’t abate much in the 93 minute cinematic embedding with Battle Company in the Korangal Valley that is Restrepo, the Grand Jury - Documentary prize winner for the 2010 Sundance Film Festival.