December 5, 2003

War Photographer

2001 – USA/Switzerland

Starring James Nachtwey, Christiane Amanpour, Hans-Hermann Klare, Christiane Breustedt, Des Wright. Directed by Christian Frei. (NR, 96 minutes). Even if you have never heard of James Nachtwey, the award-winning photojournalist who is the subject of Christian Frei’s exceptionally intimate documentary, it is likely that you are familiar with his work. For more than two decades Mr. Nachtwey has traveled to places in the world devastated by war, famine and poverty and documented the cruelty and suffering he has found with a devastating, eloquent clarity. He was in Nicaragua at the height of the contra war, in South Africa during the bloody mid-1980’s and in Rwanda in the aftermath of the 1994 genocide. Mr. Frei’s quiet, engrossing film is a sad and stirring testimony to this vision and to the quiet, self-effacing heroism with which Mr. Nachtwey has pursued it. — A. O. Scott, The New York Times

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