War, Love, God and Madness

On the surface, War, Love God and Madness is about filmmaker Mohamed Al-Daradji who is trying to make the first film in Iraq by an Iraqi filmmaker in 13 years. However, the film is much more about what life was like during the initial years of the US occupation. Through much of the early part of the documentary, the making of the film seems to take a backseat to stories of people’s everyday lives as Al-Daradji tries to assemble the talent needed for his production. As the work takes off in earnest, the filmmakers encounter a tragedy that nearly derails the project.

War, Love, God and Madness seems to meander in the first half, but the diverse elements all contribute to a deeper understanding of the tragedy that is to follow. Because the production is taking place under such stressful conditions, War, Love, God and Madness is suspenseful in ways most documentaries aren’t and is an excellent example of guerrilla filmmaking.