Wednesday, July 29, 2015

"Camp X-Ray" with Kirsten Stewart and Payman Maadi (2014)

This is a terrible movie. It would have you believe that our soldiers are unthinking and unfeeling automatons, and also that women do not belong in the military. They are too emotional. Those are not my beliefs; but that is the message of this film.

Payman Maadi plays an Islamic man who is abducted from his home in a Muslim country after 9-11. No reason is given. He is a poet and an intellectual- they let you know that. He is transported to Gitmo and is still there 8 years later when Stewart arrives.

Almost immediately we are treated to scenes of the soldiers drunken revelry in their off time; and to some extent this is fairly accurate. Having been to Gitmo several times I can attest to that. But for every soldier or sailor encountered being drunk, there are a half dozen taking college courses and working on furthering their careers.

As far as Stewarts behavior goes; when confronted by the detainees who believe her to be unfit to guard them, she does everything to prove their point. She allows herself to become emotionally involved with Maadi’s character and places herself as well as her teammates in jeopardy as a result.

This film is an attempt to persuade you that all of the detainees in Gitmo were snatched willy nilly from all over the Arab world in a misguided attempt to make ourselves feel better after 9-11. There may be some truth to that, but the majority of detainees were rounded up after intelligence gathering had unearthed their names in terrorist data bases. To be sure, there were some innocents who were caught up in the madness; this can’t be denied. But to paint with such a broad brush is irresponsible and ridiculous.

So, if you are looking for a film to insult your intelligence; as well as reinforce the stereotype of women not being fit to serve in the Armed Forces, and guard prisoners; this film is for you.

Interesting note: People who feel that women should not be serving in the Armed Forces are in agreement with the terrorists who hold women to be second class citizens at best. The soldiers who abuse Ms. Stewart in this film are of the same mind set as the Islamic fundamentalists. 

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