In The Land of Blood And Honey

June 11, 2012 at 5:42 pm | Posted in 2012 | Leave a comment

◊ ◊ ½

Angelina Jolie’s directorial debut seems to me to be just like her: Serious.  Earnest.  Important.  This film is also set during the Bosnian War (I know, two movies released in the same month about that war.  That’s like two Snow Whites… oh, wait.) and covers the “romance” between a Serbian soldier and his Bosniak prisoner.  It is heavy on atrocities, all of which are ghastly and, while you probably have not seen these specific ones, the general horror will be familiar from other genocide movies.  As a result of that, unfortunately, I felt more distance than I’m sure Jolie would have wanted.  For better or worse, I think it’s hard to shock movie goers with evil anymore.  That left only the core story, which was not that interesting to me.  Can people fall in love in that circumstance?  How do you cope with the underlying thread of doubt and mistrust?  These are fascinating questions posed by the film and, in the end, I think they were explored honestly.  I should have cared more about the answers and didn’t.  I’m not sure that I can say why.  Perhaps because the relationship never seemed tender enough for me to be invested in.  The film ended with a truth that I found shocking but I couldn’t help but feel that I should have been more shocked than I was, cared more than I did.  I’m not sure if that is a reflection on me or the film.

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