Monday, September 24, 2012

Review of Control Room


  1. (part 1) After hearing about The Control Room, I have gained new insight into the Iraqi War and discovered the vital, yet unknown opinions of the Iraqi media. Kirsten clearly explained the theme of the film, supplemented by a concise, but informative summary of the film. To my understanding, the main theme of the film was to depict the impact of the Iraqi War on Iraq, offering a new perspective on the American intervention in its country.

    Kirsten did a nice job of keeping a slow, consistent pace throughout the broadcast. A common criticism of a voice recording is that a person talks too fast; however, Kirsten did not have that problem. Her pace was easy to understand and clear. The volume was satisfactory, and I had no trouble understanding her broadcast. Kirsten definitely seemed prepared to analyze The Control Room. I was impressed that she exceeded the suggested time of the broadcast, due to great amount of information she had to offer on the topic. She adequately outlined the film, and then offered realistic strengths and weaknesses, also bringing up real world examples that caused me to step back and think about the effect of the Iraqi War on the Iraqi nation, as a whole.

    One important argument that stood out in my mind after viewing Kirsten’s broadcast was the comparison of an American citizen hearing about the deaths of Iraqi civilians versus the deaths of American soldiers. I can see and understand the perspective of most Americans in this situation. Most Americans feel out of touch with the Iraqi citizens purely because of geographic differences. To American citizens, the Iraqi civilians are foreigners with a different language and different culture. As a result, it can be hard to relate to them, causing a less emotional response when atrocities occur in their country. On the contrary, there is an immense sense of patriotism for the United States, so when a soldier is pronounced dead, it is easy for an American citizen to take it personally, allowing for a more emotional reaction. This is a perspective that is not often mentioned in media coverage or even conservation about the Iraqi war, so I commend Kirsten for bringing it up. In addition, the accusation that Americans staged many celebrations over Saddam Hussein’s downfall was particularly interesting.I was never aware of this aspect of the war, due to my sole knowledge of American coverage of the Iraqi War.

  2. (part 2) The film sounded very interesting, and I am intrigued to watch the film. It seemed to contain so many new dimensions of the Iraqi War that were not explored and discussed in the United States. This is one of the strengths of the film. It takes a radical point of view for a film shown in the United States. The film does expose a substantial amount of information that is conveniently not shown on American television or in American newspapers. Some weaknesses of the film included the mere documentary nature of the film, allowing the director to be able to slant the story any way that he wants, in order to portray people and events to his liking. As Kirsten explained, the film also did not delve into the social impact of the Iraqi War and American intervention of the citizens of Iraq. The general opinion of the citizens was talked about frequently, but no interviews were conducted, in order to gain true insight into the public attitude towards the war in Iraq.

    Overall, Kirsten effectively conveyed the purpose of the film and analyzed its key features. Her images on her broadcast were very powerful, adding to the undertones of Iraqi oppression in the film. Although the photos did add to the broadcast, I would have liked to see an equal distribution between camera and photos. In terms of content, there were many facts and experiences that I was unaware of in the Iraqi War. It was shocking to hear that Americans were put in such a negative light in the eyes of the Iraqi media. It is a facet of the war that Americans were closed off from, in order to maintain support for the war. This is a unique film, and I enjoyed viewing Kirsten’s broadcast about The Control Room.

  3. The main theme of the Control Room was the perception of the Iraqi people on the War in Iraq. She explained this perspective in great detail and provides new perspective on the issue of war. It reminds you that there are always two sides to every story. The film follows the news station Aljazeera covering the Iraqi war. The news station expresses the opinions of the Iraqi people as President Bush declares war on Iraq and throughout the war. Although the video was overtime I did not notice because it was filled with so much knowledgeable content. I think the video proved that Kirsten did her research on the subject and was open to the new perspective that was displayed in this film. She provided various examples and related them to the subject and how someone living in the US could perceive something completely different than an Iraqi citizen. The most effective point I think she made on the subject, was her comparison between the death of the American soldiers and the death of the Iraqi soldiers made by the solider. She said she is even guilty of feeling “less emotional” hearing about a death of Iraqis rather than the death of an American soldier. I believe most people on both sides can admit they agree with Kirsten on this statement. It is ultimately a human life being lost and we should not treat it as we are rooting for a particular sports team. I though the photographs were beneficial tools that helped me follow along and let me get a glimpse of the horror portrayed in the film. However, I got distracted by the pictures at times so I wasn’t listening to Kirsten taking. I had to listen it over a second time but that wasn’t a problem. She had good quality sound and was clean and crisp. The pace was steady and gave me enough time to note everything she was saying. I was surprised to hear that the Iraqi’s didn’t want Americans to interfere with the governing of Suddam Hussein. We are told stories of all of the terrible things he has done and you would wonder why the people would continue to be governed by a dictator. Also, how they believe certain events were staged by the US to depict them as superman swopping in to save the day. I wasn’t aware how negative Iraqis looked at American’s at the time. Although I did find it suspicious that Quadar the president of the news channel talked a lot about the opinions of the people but there seemed to be no interviews asking their opinion. This fact makes his statements seem unreliable at times. I do like how Kirsten inserts the portion where Quadar chooses to not show a video because it seems biased against the America. I think this exhibits the validity of the film and it should not be betrayed as a radical film trying to victimize the Iraqi people. Kirsten’s in depth discussion of the Control Room has sparked my interest for this film. I would like to see another person’s perspective on the issue of the war. However, I don’t think that the film fairly depicted both sides. Overall a fabulous job was done by Kirsten and I appreciate her broadcast on the film