Sunday, January 04, 2009
Waltz With Bashir
This is the English language trailer for an amazing animated film that I believe is now showing across America. It was made by Israeli artist, Ari Folman and it was released last year and it won best animated film at the Cannes Festival, A Golden Bear in Berlin and a Golden Globe. It is a stunning piece of work technically involving the full array of animation techniques, hand drawn, rotoscoped action (involving tracing moving figures frame by frame from filmed live action) and computer digital techniques.
I saw it last year and found it one of the best films made about the experience of being a soldier, the violence that stays with an individual after the combat.
It deals with an Israeli Soldier suffering from Post Stress Trauma Syndrome after the War with Lebanon in the early 80's.
This is an autobiographic fantasy documentary. Ari really was a young 19 year old Israeli soldier and 20 years later, he is dealing with the suppressed trauma of his own real nightmare of being involved in the massacre to avenge the death of Lebanese President Bashir Gemayel.
He relives the nightmare symbolically, trying to dig up the real memories of the event and the effects and toll it has taken on his life. It documents his own psychological struggle and therapy.
Ari manages to create true art. He uses the tools of modern comics and Japanese anime to their fullest. The powerful disturbing poetry of his attempt to come to terms with his nightmare is one we can all relate to in one way or another.
I am a real fan of animated film and both on a technical level and the story level, this film is heroic!