Every Conflict can be Resolved with a Good Movie

October 15th, 2012 by Uri

With the world in what seems like a perpetual geopolitical turmoil, and this weekend’s release of Ben Affleck’s much buzzed Argo, which recounts actual undercover escapades in 1970s Iran, we thought it might be a good idea to look at the representations of some recent conflicts and their roots.

Machine Gun Preacher

Introducing viewers to the bleak reality of wartime life in Sudan through the eyes of an idealistic American volunteer who was transformed by the crimes he witnessed against humanity. This emotional action film, much like its hero, while low on subtlety, is also quite effective.

Min Dit: The Children of Diyarbakir

Also portraying children in danger, but this time from their own point of view, without the meditation of a rocket launcher totting hero, this story about two young kids’ loss of innocence reflects on the toll of the ethnic conflict in Turkey.

Generation Kill

Detailing in a sincere fashion the chaos and mayhem of military life in a conflict zone, this critically acclaimed mini series follows the first few weeks of a marines squad deployment in Iraq.



Offering a look on another highly related conflict, this time in a non-fiction format, this thought provoking documentary about a year in the life of an isolated U.S. military base in Afghanistan won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival.

City of Life and Death

While the current focus of the Sino-Japanese conflict is the territorial dispute over the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands, its origins go much further back; one of its extremes, the occupation of Nanjing in 1937, is recounted in this epic disturbing film.

Shadow Dancer

It looks like the conflict in Northern Ireland has come to a peaceful resolution, but it wasn’t long ago when it had devastating effects on people’s lives. In this tense period piece, a single mother is thrown into a harsh moral dilemma, forced to betray her IRA family members.

El Lobo

Depicting another relatively dormant European conflict, this rough thriller, based on a true story follows a man coerced by the Spanish secret service to work undercover in a Basque radical group suspected of terrorist activity.

Thirteen Days

The Cold War may be long gone, but the shadows of this super conflict of powers are still present today. Its peak, the Cuban missile crisis, is represented in this suspenseful historical tale, focusing on John F. Kennedy’s  leadership and White House political intrigue.

JSA – Joint Security Area

Director’s Chan Wook Park’s breakthrough film deals with the long running conflict between South Korea and North Korea, choosing to concentrate on the unlikely friendship between soldiers from opposite sides of the border, which was ended by a tragic event.


With the continuous conflict between Iran and the West, Ben Affleck’s film goes back to the unstable period that started it, the eve of the Islamic revolution. The film centers on the improbable sounding, yet based on real events, daring rescue of American embassy workers from Tehran, using a scam so outlandish it’s called by a CIA agent “The best bad idea we have.”

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