Engineman 3rd Class Jay “Chef” Hicks (Frederic Forrest): How come all you guys sit on your helmets?
Soldier: So we don’t get our balls blown off.
[Chef laughs a little, seems to think for a second, and then sits on his helmet.]
(Dialogue from the 1979 American epic war film, Apocalypse Now)
(Please pause the background music to stop interference while playing the video. You can do so from the “♪ Roll your Soul ♫” section on the right. Sincerest apologies for the inconvenience caused.)
War & Peace: a theme on which zillions of pages have been wasted and countless martyrs canonized. Yet, there’s nothing that war has ever achieved that we could not better achieve without it. The world may be quieter and warmer at your cozy home tonight, but is not in another hemisphere or clime.
War is not just about explosives, or borders, or agendas, or treaties. All war is a symptom of man’s failure as a thinking animal. There are words hidden within worlds and worlds legible without words. Four such inherent implications, presented in the form of haikus and short films:
A wild thunderclap;
Her veiled silhouette escapes
Into meek silence.
[“Shock and Awe”. Written & Directed by Chase Palmer. “The simplicity of the story trumped the need for an actual translation of what they were saying. At times subtitles can be distracting, particularly when the dialogue is simple and the film so short.” – Miky Wolf (Sound Editor), on being asked why English subtitling wasn’t done.]
Fortune beckons you
Yet you refuse to pick up;
Your inbox is full.
[“8”. Written & Directed by Acim Vasic. Best Short Film Award at the 8th edition of “Monfilmfest Giochi di Cinema de Casalborgone”. IMDB link here.]
Flashes of combat
And moments with beloved;
Now bound forever.
[“Somewhere Else”. Written by Gregory J. Wilson; Directed by Brendan Bellomo; Produced by Brian Thomas Wilson. Shot in 2 days with the Phantom Flex camera, this was the first film shot with the camera while still in its prototype stage.]
The soldier sits still
Waiting for the enemy;
A dove flies over.
To conclude: War is neither a solution nor dissolution; it’s an unending succession. Peace is neither a definition nor an institution; it’s the real constitution. Om Shanti!
Copyright © 2012-2013 Tanumoy Biswas and The Nomadic Soliloquist. All Rights Reserved.