“November 2007. I have been asked to go and film a Kurdish battalion of the Iraqi army. This battalion is located in Mossoul. I have 48 hours to make a decision. I decide to go. There, a friend gives me his old Hi8 camera with ten tapes. I am a photographer. I have never filmed anything. I have never seen War. For a whole month, I remain close to these soldiers and I film their everyday life, in spite of everything. Long stops, endless wanderings through the city, looking for untraceable terrorists”, this is how Édouard Beau describes the shooting of his first film.
What is to be seen? Zealous policemen on business, even if they end up empty handed. The stunning proximity of images doesn’t spare us any of their harrowing brutality, the beatings, the yelling, an exhausted city, houses violently violated, terrifying searches, fear that reigns and quashes everyone. All of this is present, echoing the last De Palma film. But although it’s a first feature, no amateurism is to be found here. While the shadow of news report and the hunt for the spectacular may put this enterprise at risk, something else is proposed here. The action in this film takes place in one day, from sunrise till sunset. The film constructs its own temporality. Which one? That of a law that wants to absorb chaos. In reality, it is chaos that absorbing law.