Veterans put their own war stories on film


Irked by Hollywood’s portrayals of the Iraq and Afghan conflicts — don’t get them started on ‘The Hurt Locker’ — five veterans will offer their cinematic perspectives.

* By Alexandra Zavis  Los Angeles Times *

For years, they have cringed at Hollywood’s portrayals of the Iraq and Afghan wars. And don’t get them started on the inaccuracies in the Oscar-nominated film “The Hurt Locker.”

Now, five veterans have been offered a chance to make their own documentaries about the consequences of the wars for them and for those around them.

Commissioned by Brave New Foundation, they will produce and direct short films on topics including the Muslim experience in the U.S. military and veterans making the transition from the battlefield to the college campus.

“What we are hoping to do is to get . . . a perspective we may not have seen, or that we see very infrequently, and that is the direct perspective of the veteran,” said Richard Ray Perez, executive producer of “In Their Boots,” a Web series on the wars’ effects in the U.S.

That perspective is readily available in print. One of the veterans, Clint Van Winkle, 32, of Phoenix has published an unflinching account, “Soft Spots: A Marine’s Memoir of Combat and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.” But because a film is more difficult to produce, most war documentaries are the product of civilian filmmakers.

Although their subjects vary, the filmmakers share a desire to challenge the stereotypes about veterans.

Read more at Los Angeles Times

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