Blessed by Fire
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|Blessed by Fire|
|Iluminados por el fuego|
|Directed by||Tristán Bauer|
|Produced by||Ana de Skalon
|Written by||Tristán Bauer
Gustavo Romero Borri
|Based on||Iluminados por el fuego
by Edgardo Esteban with collaboration of Gustavo Romero Borri
|Music by||León Gieco|
|Editing by||Alejandro Brodersohn|
|Distributed by||Distribution Company
Koch-Lorber Films (United States)
Soda Pictures (United Kingdom)
|Release dates||September 8, 2005|
|Running time||100 minutes|
Blessed by Fire (Spanish: Iluminados por el fuego) (2005) is an Argentine film about the Falklands War written and directed by Tristán Bauer. The film features Gastón Pauls, Pablo Ribba, César Albarracín and Hugo Carrizo among others. It is based on a book written by a veteran of the war.
The film was nominated for 22 awards and won 14 of them.
A powerful Argentine anti-war film in the tradition of American Vietnam war films such as Full Metal Jacket and Coming Home, Blessed By Fire is the story of two young men who were sent to fight the 1982 war in the Falkland Islands (or as they are known in Argentina, Las Malvinas) and who return home bearing the brutal scars of war.
Twenty years after the war's end, journalist Esteban Leguizamón (Gastón Pauls) is informed that Alberto Vargas (Pablo Ribba), one of the men he served with, has attempted suicide after suffering from years of depression brought on by his experiences in the war. Esteban visits the comatose Vargas at the hospital, and in a series of extended flashbacks, revisits the scene of Argentina's "unwinnable war."
The film depicts Esteban and fellow soldiers Vargas (Pablo Ribba, the man in the coma) and Juan (Cesar Albarracin), who are living in foxholes on the remote, windswept Falklands, battling hunger, boredom, abuse, and the deprivations of war as they await the arrival of British forces. A series of harrowing battle scenes with British forces ensues, and the Argentines realise the futility and violence of their mission. They are cannon fodder, pawns in a futile political game.
Back in the present, Esteban returns to the Falklands to come to terms with himself and the past. The emotional final scenes were shot on location in the Falklands, for the first time in Argentine film. As Esteban looks over the still off-limits battlefields filled with mines, live ammunition, and rusting military equipment, the futility of war is abundantly clear.
- Gastón Pauls as Esteban Leguizamón
- Pablo Ribba as Alberto Vargas
- César Albarracín as Juan Chamorro
- Victor Hugo Carrizo as Pizarro
- Virginia Innocenti as Maria Vargas
- Juan Leyrado
- Arturo Bonín
Release and relevance
Controversial in its homeland and politically relevant[clarification needed] in the United States, Blessed By Fire is a moving tribute to the veterans of all wars and the psychological burdens they bear.
The film was shown on the Australian TV channel SBS on March 17, 2009.
Silver Condor: Graciela Fraguglia, Alejandro Brodersohn, Tristán Bauer, Edgardo Esteban, Miguel Bonasso, Gustavo Romero Borri, Virginia Innocenti.