Folman wins Golden Globe for 'Waltz with Bashir'

Maker hopes babies born during filming will grow to a future where war will be like "old video game."

Waltz with Bashir good 88 248 (photo credit: Courtesy)
Waltz with Bashir good 88 248
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Israeli documentary filmmaker Ari Folman won the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Film on Sunday night, for his animated feature Waltz with Bashir. Folman thanked his team and his wife and dedicated the award to the babies born to his team members over the four years during which the film was made. Expressing his wish to see peace arrive in the war-torn Middle East, Folman said he hoped one day these babies will regard the film and the war it describes as an old video game with which they had nothing to do. The Golden Globe is widely considered a precursor to the Academy Awards and movies winning Golden Globes often later garner 'Oscar' statuettes as well. Waltz with Bashir is unorthodox as a documentary for its use of animation throughout the movie, only employing documentary footage in its last minutes. The film deals with Folman's own experience of Operation Peace of Galilee, later popularly known in Israel as the Lebanon War, fought in 1982. Through the sole vague memory he holds from his war experience, Folman's animated alter-ego goes on a physical and mental journey, visiting old friends, talking to them about their own war experiences and little by little piecing a horrible narrative which, the film hints, his mind had repressed because of the atrocities he witnessed as a young infantryman. The film focuses on the war's most troubling episode - the massacre of Palestinian refugees by Christian Phalangists in the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps - an event which led to a public outcry in Israel and abroad. An Israeli investigative committee (the Kahan Committee) found the IDF "indirectly responsible" for the massacre by allowing it to occur and eventually brought about the resignation of then defense minister Ariel Sharon. For all its uncovering a shameful moment in the history of the war the film won wide acclaim in Israel, with both critics and the public, also winning several awards in the nationally sanctioned Ofir Award ceremony.