September 7th- 7:00 and 9:30- 85 minutes
Dir. Tony Gerber and Jesse Moss- USA 2008
The town of Medina Wasl is the focus of this documentary by Tom Garber and Jesse Moss. Medina Wasl is a small desert village with a mixed Sunni/Shiite population that has just been occupied by American forces. What is unusual about Medina Wasl is that it’s not located in Iraq, but California’s Mojave Desert. Its “citizens” are Iraq-Americans, and every explosion, insurgency and sneak attack against the American forces is orchestrated by simulation planners. “If Full Battle Rattle begins as surreal, almost goofball farce, with a bunch of beefy guys playing a fancy-dress version of laser tag in the desert -- aided by a bunch of rented Iraqis who'd rather be watching TV in suburbia -- it ends on an ambiguous and haunting note, much closer to tragedy.” (Andrew O’ Hehir, Salon).