|Written by||Oliver Stangl|
|Published on||May 9, 2011|
Vaughan Smith is a fearless director who already filmed several military embeds – when he filmed a Serbian military action in the 90’s a bullett lodged in his cell phone. [...]
Vaughan Smith is a fearless director who already filmed several military embeds – when he filmed a Serbian military action in the 90’s a bullett lodged in his cell phone. His latest work took him to Afghanistan. In Blood and Dust he shows the other side of the war – the human side. And in the case of a war this means suffering. Blood and Dusts length is only about 25 minutes, but those 25 minutes are extremely intense and the title is quite literal. Sometimes the dust of the rough Afghan landscape is so heavy that one can hardly see what’s going on on screen; and when you can see what’s going on you see wounded soldiers and the exhausted faces of their comrades.
Smith, who also founded the Frontline Club, an instituition to advance independent journalism and who also gave refuge to Julian Assange some months ago, spent ten days with paramedics of the US Army’s 214th Aviation Regiment and created a film that takes an unadorned look at the ugly side of war. In interviews the doctors and soldiers talk about their feelings and the uncertainty of their work. They never know what the next call is going to be, how hard it is going to be.
Smith’s camera is always close to the medics, even in the most dangerous situations. Here one can see what war really is. One can imagine that many of the men think about quitting but in the end all comes down to the Aviation Regiment’s motto: „Striving to save lives.“
documentary.net says: If you are interested in war footage that is not shown on the news, this is a film for you.