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Eastwood's Iwo JimaCritical Engagements with Flags of Our Fathers and Letters from Iwo Jima$
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Anne Gjelsvik and Rikke Schubart

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231165655

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231165655.001.0001

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Haunting in the War Film

Haunting in the War Film

Flags of Our Fathers

(p.157) Haunting in the War Film
Eastwood's Iwo Jima

Robert Burgoyne

Columbia University Press

This chapter examines the motif of haunting in the war film by focusing on Clint Eastwood’s 2006 film Flags of Our Fathers. It speculates about the role of the uncanny in the war film, suggesting that a “defining and distinguishing feature of the genre is the haunting of the present by the past, the past trying to possess the present.” Through an analysis of voice, space, place, and the extensive uses of flashbacks, the essay shows how the living are haunted by both the past and the dead and offers a new perspective on Flags of Our Fathers as well as on the war film as a genre. It highlights the relationship between the present, the past, and the process of memory as a recurring theme in Eastwood’s Iwo Jima.

Keywords:   haunting, war film, Clint Eastwood, Flags of Our Fathers, uncanny, present, past, living, dead, memory

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