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“Restrepo” Documentary Film Rating Essay

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Updated: May 7th, 2021

Rating of the Movie “Restrepo”

It is no doubt that with technological innovation, the quality of movies, as well as television shows, has continuously improved. Thus the viewing experience is being brought up to an improved level which makes the experience more amusing and enjoyable. Nonetheless, there are a group of people who hold that with improvement in technology in the filming industry there are instances where the quality of the cinematography and animation improves but the desired level of morals are being sacrificed. Movie rating usually helps prospectus viewers to choose whether to watch a given movie or not. This later is useful in guiding producers and directors to seriously think about all aspects of movie production. The essay is a rating of the movie Restrepo directed and produced by Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger back in 2010.

The movie is about the efforts of Junger and Hetherington who spent a year with B Company the second platoon that was sent to a combat zone in Afghanistan. Korengal Valley in northeast Afghanistan was their exact location. It was deemed to be the most dangerous place on earth since there were about three to four attacks daily (Hetherington and Junger, 2010). The region is a desert with no vegetation; the surface is filled with dust. The American soldiers were to get rid of the Taliban insurgence group and gain the trust of the civilian. However, the soldiers were ambushed and two members lost their lives, Restrepo and Vimeo. Capt. Dan Kearney who was the leader of the troop sought to establish an outpost which was later named after the fallen soldier Restrepo.

To rate the chosen movie, the system I will adopt is based on letter grades A, B, C, D, and F. ‘A’ being the highest grade and ‘F’ being the lowest. There is a list of points I will be analyzing in a film to appoint a specific grade, they include;

  1. Storyline/plotline
  2. Character development
  3. Dialogue
  4. Cinematography
  5. Entertainment Factor

I will rate the documentary to be a grade ‘A’ film. For a movie to be rated this high, the film must be strong on the five points stated above. Concerning story or plotline, it is a story of the second platoon of Battle Company that was deployed for 15 months in Korengal Valley to deal with the insurgency of the Taliban. The producers and directors followed the chronicle of the events from pre-deployment and the actual life the soldiers faced while in Afghanistan. The actual task began when the soldiers worked at OP Korengal and it is here that they lost two men, Vimoto and Restrepo (Hetherington and Junger, 2010). Through the leadership of Capt. Dan Kearney an outpost was created in honor of Restrepo.

Additionally, his efforts to engage the local communities into negotiation and the tough lives his troop endured are brought out. The tragic consequences towards the end of the movie shows how civilians and some soldiers lost their lives. The plot is a reality of what American soldiers endure when they went to the Middle East to tackle the issue of terrorism.

Concerning character development, the directors and producers ensured that they did not take any part while narrating the events. This responsibility was left to the soldiers themselves. Through such narrations, one character develops other characters. The characters were lovely and ensured that the emotions related to war are perfectly relayed to viewers. The character of Capt. Dan Kearney is that of a true and modern military leader who believes in negotiation especially with the local people to gain their trust.

The film perfectly used dialogue. The strength of the same rests on the ability of the soldiers to give an account of what they experienced in the field. For instance, the following statement was said by Sgt. Miguel “I saw his face, “How it was. Kind of… messed up. I wanted to cry but didn’t” (Hetherington and Junger, 2010). This was about one of his comrades who died while fighting with the Taliban. Additionally Staff Sgt. Aron Hijar said, “The fear is always there, especially at night, when you can’t see what’s coming at you” (Hetherington and Junger, 2010). This makes the viewers see how dangerous the place was.

The issue of cinematography which includes animation quality, clarity of projection, and overall visual quality was indeed perfect. There is no doubt that the film is entertaining while it takes one through the lives of American soldiers. It also brings to light the concept of togetherness because the soldiers come from different parts of the U.S. However the emotion it brings makes one appreciate what American soldiers are capable particularly with regards to bringing peace (Hetherington and Junger, 2010).

The concept of rating movies helps cinema-goers to spend their money on films that are worth their money. Similarly, since producers and directors are certain that their films or movies will be scrutinized, they will dedicate more effort to come up with an appealing movie, well balanced in terms of plot, entertainment, character development, cinematography without compromising on morals.


Restrepo, directed by Hetherington Tim and Junger Sebastian. 2010. London, UK: National Geographic Entertainment Dogwoof Pictures, 2010. DVD.

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