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Mixed or average reviews - based on 16 Critics What's this?

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8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 20 Ratings

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  • Summary: Body of War is an intimate and transformational feature documentary about the true face of war today. Meet Tomas Young, 25 years old, paralyzed from a bullet to his spine--wounded after serving in Iraq for less than a week. Body of War is Tomas' coming-home story as he evolves into a new person, coming to terms with his disability and finding his own unique, passionate voice against the war. The film is produced and directed by Phil Donahue and Ellen Spiro, and features two original songs by Eddie Vedder. Body of War is a naked, honest portrayal of what it's like inside the body, heart, and soul of this extraordinary and heroic young man. (The Film Sales Company) Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 16
  2. Negative: 3 out of 16
  1. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    88
    Phil Donahue and Ellen Spiro's powerful documentary takes a microcosmic look at the war and its devastation by focusing on a single casualty.
  2. 83
    Body Of War purposefully depicts an America in turmoil. But it also depicts an America far more capable of living with contradictions than the "Red State/Blue State"-obsessed cable-news pundits would have us believe.
  3. The parade of senators parroting the rationale for invasion - what we now know was misinformation - does not undermine Young's story. Given the private's eloquence, the flashbacks to 2002 are superfluous.
  4. Politics recede in the face of the realities of Young's life, and Spiro and Donahue would have succeeded in making the same point had they omitted all but his day-to-day existence. Together, however, they comprise a powerful indictment of the tactical politics that led to the invasion and a heartbreaking account of one man's living with the aftermath.
  5. Reviewed by: John DeFore
    50
    This movie wants to help make things better. But it also -- fervently, and for a purpose -- holds a grudge.
  6. Reviewed by: John Anderson
    50
    There's never any mistaking the film's politics. If they were any different, it would be a surprise, given that the co-director and executive producer is the onetime talk-show god and lifelong liberal Donahue. But it is a film (as opposed to a collection of talking heads, Michael Moore-style ambushes or Robert Greenwaldian shorthand).
  7. When the veterans of this war are finally allowed to tell their own stories, we will have something worth listening to. Body of War is just election year claptrap.

See all 16 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Steve.
    Apr 27, 2008
    9
    Truth is hard to come by these days. You will watch aghast at our politicians who craftily use fear to sweep this country into an erroneous war. This movie looks beyond mainstream media and examines the true costs of war with a courageous hero who moves beyond his disability. Body of war is an inspirational movie for all of us to stand up to truth. Expand

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