Ambiguities of war: 8 questions about The Hurt Locker
"The rush of battle is a potent and often lethal addiction, for war is a drug."
---from Chris Hedge's War Is a Force that Gives Us Meaning
1) What do Iraqis think of The Hurt Locker?
2) How is the thunderingly enthusiastic critical response to The Hurt Locker, its many awards, Oscar nominations, etc., related to American ambivalence concerning our role in the war? How does The Hurt Locker square with American media treatment of the war?
3) What are the political implications of The Hurt Locker? Does the movie, as Kathryn Bigelow hopes, bring "closure" to the war?
4) What, exactly, does Sergeant William James' bombsuit or Blast Suit evoke? The Pillsbury Dough Boy? Delusional American attempts to protect themselves from the consequences of war? The Michelin Man?
5) Why did Ralph Fiennes have a small role as the Contractor Team Leader? His celebrity presence threw me out of the movie.
6) Why is the film's most effective scene when William James stands before an immense aisle of breakfast cereals back in the states?
7) How much is Kathryn Bigelow's portrayal of William James both an affirmation and a critique of swaggering American military machismo?