The true story of James Hogue, a brilliant impostor who embraced the American art of self-invention, fabricated a spectacular series of fictional identities for himself, and successfully conned his way into Princeton University
In an artificial Iraqi village, built by the US Army in California's Mojave Desert, soldiers are training before being sent to Iraq. They are playing war games intended to simulate situations that may happen to them in real life in the war-ridden country. In scenarios prepared by trainers villagers are played by real Iraqi immigrants. It turns out that scripted role-playing in an artificial environment can trigger some real emotions.
At least these are the expectations that the makers of this movie try to induce in audience to encourage them to watch it. Yet the story unfolds very slowly and does not reveal any surprising concealed meanings. Don't get me wrong - this story is interesting, it is filmed professionally and it is fun to watch. But if one counts on discovering something that was hidden before the eyes, thinks he will be deeply moved by the unraveled behind-the-scenes mysteries or be left pondering over the shown inconvenient or previously unsaid facts - he will probably be disappointed. Unless he can be satisfied by the "touching", typically American ending, in which we wave good-bye to these brave young boys leaving country to die on the foreign soil.
Despite these complaints, I recommend watching this film, because this is quite an interesting picture, showing unknown to the public and unconventional way of training of the contemporary US Army. The movie succeeds in keeping ones attention and some scenes, often very funny, stay in memory for long. Just don't expect to see what the filmmakers are promising - "a full of sarcasm allegory of the war in Iraq". This documentary is straightforward to the bone.
My rating: 7/10
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