Undoubtedly, the frequent nature of the wars in the 20e century has given the world some of its greatest famous war reporters. Some of these reporters ended up becoming famous writers. Ernest Hemingway was of course the most famous of them.
Today, the recent death of Danish journalist Siddiqui, Pulitzer Prize winner, in Afghanistan shocked everyone. He also highlighted the dangers associated with war reporting. Suddenly everyone is wondering what it is like to be a journalist working in a war / conflict zone. Obviously, the 20e century has also seen some of the best films about reporters working in war zones.
So let’s go back to some of these classics from the last century and try to understand what life is like for journalists operating in these regions.
1. Under Fire (1983)
This war drama directed by Roger Spottiswoode takes place in Nicaragua. Three journalists from a romantic triangle became embroiled in political intrigue in the last days of the corrupt Somozoa regime in the country before it fell into a popular revolution in 1979.
This movie has some of the most compelling background music for war dramas and the performances are absolutely top notch. Plus, I can’t praise the cinematography enough. For a movie with plenty of violence, Under Fire is totally watchable and can be enjoyed on different levels.
2. The Year of the Dangerous Life (1982)
This Peter Weir classic takes place in Indonesia. A young Australian journalist tries to navigate the country’s political turmoil during President Sukarno’s reign with the help of a small photographer.
Here is another movie with great music and wonderful performances. Since it is directed by Peter Weir, one can be reassured about the technical brilliance of the film. The real USP of the film is the chemistry between Mel Gibson and Sigourney Weaver. And not to mention American actress Linda Hunt who plays a Chinese-Australian male photographer and actually wins an Oscar.