Best Defense

Thomas E. Ricks' daily take on national security.

Terrorism films (VI): ‘Paradise Now’

I was surprised at how much I liked Paradise Now, the latest in our terrorism film festival. It had an interesting vibe, different from most terrorism films, with a surprisingly relaxed mode of storytelling. It kind of sneaks up on you. The film is controversial, of course — you couldn’t make a film on this ...

574576_100112_Paradisenowfilmb2.jpg
574576_100112_Paradisenowfilmb2.jpg

I was surprised at how much I liked Paradise Now, the latest in our terrorism film festival. It had an interesting vibe, different from most terrorism films, with a surprisingly relaxed mode of storytelling. It kind of sneaks up on you.

The film is controversial, of course -- you couldn't make a film on this subject without being so. The "danger" is that one humanizes suicide bombers. But as my wife the saint points out, they are humans, so the question is: Why do humans do this? I think the film achieves its director's aim of being a work of art rather than a political statement.  

Interestingly, the director has said that "I wouldn't do it again." He explained, "It's not worth endangering your life for a movie."

I was surprised at how much I liked Paradise Now, the latest in our terrorism film festival. It had an interesting vibe, different from most terrorism films, with a surprisingly relaxed mode of storytelling. It kind of sneaks up on you.

The film is controversial, of course — you couldn’t make a film on this subject without being so. The “danger” is that one humanizes suicide bombers. But as my wife the saint points out, they are humans, so the question is: Why do humans do this? I think the film achieves its director’s aim of being a work of art rather than a political statement.  

Interestingly, the director has said that “I wouldn’t do it again.” He explained, “It’s not worth endangering your life for a movie.”

Meanwhile, the Iranian government is pissed at the Palestinian Authority for playing footsie with the Muj-e-Khalq. A foreign ministry guy in Tehran says, “MKO has been recognized as a terrorist group at international scene and the move accounted for new phase of cooperation with the group.”

And Turkey’s PM is dissing Israel.

Can’t we all just get along?

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. Twitter: @tomricks1

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