The movie Redacted by the prestigeous film director Brian de Palma deals with many burning issues. It vividly shows the Iraqi war, and the conduct some of the US soldiers had during that time. It tackles the subject of the denigrating acts the US soldiers comitted against the Iraqi people, even to women and children. Indeed, the movie shows situations of shocking violence, and the desperation of the innocent people in Iraq. In addition to this, the film demonstrates how hard it is for the soldiers who lived such suffering and atrocities to come back to their homes in the USA.
Another thing that makes the movie particularly efficient in its task of shocking the general public and raise awareness about the subject is the fact that the movie seems uncanningly real: all the scenes seem to be shot by an "amateur" and the atmosphere of the Iraqi cities is extremely realistic and faithful to reality.
Moreover, the film is clearly critical and denounces the multiple abuses the US army comitted during the war.
This movie can be related to the notion of Power because of multiple issues it raises:
On the one hand, the movie obviously questions the North American power in today's world. It is not the shining beacon of freedom that it pretends to be, and it definitely does not bring peace to the countries in which it "intervenes". But it also shows what the US is capable of...Indeed, they were able to start a war, and to finance it, and for now, getting away with the abuses comitted by their soldiers during that period.
On the other hand, the film is a clear way of Brian de Palma to try to raise awareness about the subject, to draw attention to the fact that many have gone unpunished, and that world should not be allowing such a thing. Actually, this movie could be related to the power of knowledge and culture. Can a movie change the world? The power of the cultural industry against the political power of the states of the world.
Here's a review by Mick LaSalle, published in the San Francisco Gate newspaper: