DVD Review by Kam Williams
Headline: Documentary on DVD Shows Simulated War Games in Desert
The final stop American soldiers make before being deployed to the Middle East is a top-secret, billion-dollar, 1,000 square-mile facility in the
Full Battle Rattle, directed by Tony Gerber and Jesse Moss, follows a battalion from
Why the U.S. Government ever agreed to let anyone film these maneuvers on location at
Consequently, far more interesting than the staged standoffs are the heartfelt reflections of the participants during downtime. There’s an irony about the contrast of hearing Iraqi-Americans talking about life in this country and watching the military-industrial complex putting the finishing touches on young enlistees about to ship out to a godforsaken land to kill or be killed.
Full Battle Rattle’s closing credits include a sobering postscript noting that five members of the battalion starring you’ve just watched play war died over in Iraq, thereby turning the surreal to grim in an instant.
Excellent (4 stars)
Running time: 85 minutes
Distributor: First Run Features
DVD Extras: Bonus scenes, photo gallery, filmmakers’ Q&A at SXSW Festival and more.