- Sorry, this item is not available in
- Image not available
- To view this video download Flash Player
Acclaimed director Tristán Bauer presents the harrowing story of a band of Argentinean soldiers sent to fight an un-winnable war and left to bear the brutal scars of the past. After learning of a friends attempted suicide, a journalist goes back to relive his experiences in the Falklands.
War is bad, and that about sums up the message of Blessed by Fire (a.k.a. Illuminated by Fire), a well-meaning but thinly written drama that boasts some dynamic scenes of battlefront futility. To be fair, director Tristan Bauer's emotionally potent drama did win the Best Narrative Feature award at the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival, and it has the distinction of being the first Argentinian film to openly address the physical and psychological devastation that resulted from the brief 1982 war against British forces in the British-colonized Falkland Islands (or Malvinas, as they're known in Argentina). The legacy of that woefully imbalanced war is tragic beyond comprehension: In Argentina, the number of suicides among Malvinas war veterans is higher than the number of casualties from the war itself, and that sad statistic crucially informs Bauer's story (based on a novel by Engardo Esteban and Gustavo Romero Borri) about a present-day journalist named Esteban (Gaston Pauls) who served in the Malvinas war with Vargas (Pablo Ribba), who's now comatose and hospitalized after attempting suicide with a drug-overdose cocktail. The film flashes back-and-forth from the present to their experiences leading up to and including the decisive battle on Mount Longdon (re-created in a harrowing 20-minute sequence), and while Blessed by Fire is certainly no Saving Private Ryan, its chaotic battle scenes are impressively intense and painstakingly realistic, and Bauer is equally effective in showing the miserably cold battlefield conditions prior to the eruption of violence. As Esteban's memory takes him back to the horrors of battle, his friend's present-day suicide attempt resonates throughout the film, which is surely more powerful for Argentinian viewers than for anyone else. We learn very little about the central character, however, and Paul's performance is too passively blank to draw us deeply into his emotional turmoil. Still, this is one of the few films to deal with what has essentially become a forgotten war, and Bauer's noble reminder offers reassuring proof that Argentina's sacrifices will not be forgotten. --Jeff Shannon
I liked the storyline of this movie from the beginning to the ending. I also thought the cinematography was excellent. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Ricardo
Very much worth watching for the part of the fight Anglophone countries don't hear about.
Gritty look and feel to how the troops were living in the field. Read more
A must see to understand what these poor Arjentinian soldiers went through during this island war.
They were closer to this island then the british, but sure the brits were... Read more