This Academy Award-nominated feature-length documentary chronicles the deployment of a platoon of U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan's Korengal Valley. The movie focuses on a remote 15-man outpost, "Restrepo," named after a platoon medic who was killed in action. It was considered one of the most dangerous postings in the U.S. military. This is an entirely experiential film: the cameras never leave the valley; there are no interviews with generals or diplomats. The only goal is to make viewers feel as if they have just been through a 90-minute deployment. This is war, full stop. The conclusions are up to you.
KORENGAL picks up where RESTREPO left off; the same men, the same valley, the same commanders, but a very different look at the experience of war. KORENGAL explains how war works, what it feels like and what it does to the young men who fight it. As one soldier cheers when he kills an enemy fighter, another looks into the camera and asks if God will ever forgive him for all of the killing he has done. As one soldier grieves the loss of his friend in combat, another explains why he misses the war now that his deployment has ended, and admits he would go back to the front line in a heartbeat. Every bit as intense and affecting as RESTREPO, KORENGAL goes a step further in bringing the war into people's living rooms back home.
A few years ago, Oscar®-nominated filmmaker Sebastian Junger (“Restrepo”) planned a walk from Washington, D.C. to New York City along Amtrak railroad lines with his close friend, acclaimed war reporter Tim Hetherington. After Hetherington was killed covering the Libyan civil war in 2011, Junger decided to take the same trip accompanied by combat veterans Brendan O’Byrne (previously seen in “Restrepo”) and Dave Roels, as well as acclaimed Spanish photojournalist Guillermo Cervera.
Shortly after the release of his documentary Restrepo, photographer Tim Hetherington was killed in Libya. Colleague and filmmaker Sebastian Junger traces Hetherington's work across the world's battlefields to reveal how he transcended the boundaries of image-making to become a luminary in his profession.