Ed Halter has a interesting take on how two Iraq documentaries may rehabilitate the image of the much-criticized embedding process as a means for creating accurate historical documents of the war. [Of course, that that's not at all how it worked out with the TV news embeds is also just fine with the Pentagon.]
Gunner Palace's making-of experience is better known now, although Tucker has been rather specific in saying he and his crew were not officially embedded with the military unit they covered.
Ian Olds' and Garrett Scott's crew for Occupation: Dreamland, however, was embedded with a unit in Fallujah; it was just slacker oversight because of the timing and the distance from Baghdad's bureaucracy. Anyway, two Dreamland-related quotes jump out at me:
the film slogs through time alongside them, in resolute vÈritÈ scenes of you-are-there surrealism.Over There: Documentarians bring the real war back home [vv]
"When we looked at what we shot," Olds recalls, "we realized that it looked like anything from the news, if you just took one moment at a time. So making the documentary was really this process of creating a context. Because the images we had were essentially the same images, but they played out longer, so you were given the context, and you knew the people involved. And all of a sudden, it seems like something that you've never seen."
Occupation: Dreamland screens next week at SXSW [sxsw.com]