We often watch world conflicts on TV and think they could never occur in our own country: we're too civilized to surrender ourselves to such brutal behaviour. This thought is one of many that haunts a group of Spanish peacekeepers in the embattled Serbian province of Kosovo. The troops represent a spectrum of personalities: the pacifist, the trigger happy, the professional soldier, the UN translator with conflicting loyalties, the soldier who wants no part of somebody else's conflict and who just wants to go home. As they undertake their duties - rebuilding a Church, restoring electricity to a town - the conflict becomes their reality. They are swept into it, and far from being the placid observers & peacekeepers they think they ought to be, they now must fight for their own survival. They slowly begin to lose that veneer of civilization that they though only they possessed, the same patina these embattled locals once had, but lost long ago. The director based many of the stories on actual events as told to him by Spanish soldiers returning from the region. It is filmed in a very gripping and heavy way - drawing you into it all, along with the lost soldiers. It drew great acclaim at the Toronto International Film Festival, 2002. For those who followed (or survived) the events of the last decade in the Balkans, it is a stark and honest portrayal that will leave many re-thinking the versions they may have formulated in their own minds, reading newspapers and watching TV, comfortable, in their own very civilized, and very insular, homes
13 of 18 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this