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TRIAGE (2009) – Vivid images of the war in Kurdistan break our indifference

December 14, 2009

Source: LaVoce
Written by Paolo Quaglia
Original text in Italian; Translated here into English — thank you Lex.

The vivid images of the war in Kurdistan return to us, breaking our indifference.
Presented “Triage” a drama about the ongoing wars, with Colin Farrell and Christopher Lee.

The fact that Danis Tanovic knows war well, became well known in 2002 when he won the Oscar for a film devoid of any moral theme, narrated with a dry voice and very close to reality. We’re obviously talking about “No Man’s Land.” Now the Bosnian director offers us another war story seen through the eyes of a photojournalist, but lived by anyone having anything to do with the unfair and sometimes cruel realities of a country under siege.

Mark (Colin Farrell) and David (Jamie Sives) are photographers who take pictures of the war in Kurdistan. Mark is very ambitious and still wants to follow the conflict for a few days in search of the shot which can give meaning to his trip, but David’s had enough–violence and conflict have marked him indelibly, so he decides to return home to his wife Diane, who is pregnant with their son.

Mark, seriously wounded, ends up in a local hospital in the caves of Hariri, where he meets a doctor who is forced to decide the fate of his patients. One day, Mark is found near a river, injured and in pain, with no knowledge of what happened to him.

When Mark returns to Dublin, he is shocked, but not too worried to discover that David is not back yet. Exhausted and disoriented, he chooses hospitalization and the doctors conclude that his inability to walk is of psychosomatic origin, given his recent stay in Kurdistan. At that point, his wife Elena has no choice but to turn to her grandfather, Joaquin, a man who she has never forgiven–guilty of having acquitted war criminals after the civil conflict in Spain.

A film of great quality and depth, it transports us without escape into a world where even the viewer has to perhaps, and as a sort of identification through the images, experience the possibility to lead a peaceful life whether he’s one who makes war or who suffers through it.

Tanovic manages to put together a tight-knit cast, where stands a majestic Colin Farrell, a star of world cinema, who is able to convey both the fearful and submissive nature of his character.

The script is pivotal, devoid of moralizing, merely telling the story without invading the viewers’ collective imagination. If we add to this the excellent reconstruction of scenes of war, the film emerges in tune to a proper wavelength, without proselytizing, and well-acted.

Christopher Lee is the perfect choice for the role of the psychologist, who with his static expression, and restrained performance renders his character believable, at times remorseless, but performs his given task despite the terrible secret he carries within.

If war does not serve anybody, this film strikes directly to our conscience as civilians. Pure Cinema.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Dar permalink
    December 15, 2009 7:11 am

    I agree with the reviewer. The cast looks really good.

  2. Steve permalink
    December 15, 2009 10:15 am

    Thanks for the translation here. I hope we get a chance to see this one on US screens too.

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