Not a blog about the science or practice of travel through books, but perhaps rather about science, practice and travel through books.

The better war movie

People don’t go to war because it’s cute or fair. People go to war because of interests and passion. It’s not about moral. It’s about dehumanizing the enemy so you can look away from moral. Thousands of years of civilizing appears wasted when the worst insticts resting inside all of us are digged up.

I’ve seen a lot of war movies, mostly American. What I find strange is that none of them have made me puke. In fact many war movies don’t even leave a bad taste in your mouth. Most films show good soldiers fighting bad soldiers. Ultra-cool special soldiers take out their enemies with surgical precision. Few show what war really is.

Well, today I saw this film, Harrison’s Flowers, that at least cleaned my tearchannels. And it was not mainly because of extremely gruesome pictures, but because of the well-driven story. Instead of being put in the shoes of soldiers, we were photojournalists digging deeper and deeper into the Croatian War of Independence. It got worse and worse until we reached hell, Vukovar. A war without good guys or bad guys. Just alot of humans with the potenial for doing good and bad. We can make the most beautiful art and music – and we can be more evil than any animals. And still we are all born the same. Harrison’s Flowers show some aspects of human beeing..

Yes, we Norwegians are in many ways lucky. We don’t have the trauma from evilness coming from inside, like it did in Croatia or in Germany under World War II for that sake. This absurdness and surrealism have no place in Norwegian history. We so easily except human behaviour to be realistic. Therefore we so need movies like this to tell us the story about what human behaviour also can be like. We need it, not just to understand actions in other parts of the world, but also to spot the evilness inside ourself. Because also in Norway the evilness may come from inside sometimes, it’s just hidden so you don’t easily spot it: in everyday racism, child-beatening or other forms.


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