Combat Diary; The Marines of Lima Company (2006)
This video diary is by soldiers and about soldiers, specifically, the 184 marines of Lima Company, a reserve unit from Columbus, Ohio, that was deployed to Iraq from February 28, 2005 to September 30, 2005. The film begins with their jaunty send-off and ends with their tearful reunions amongst a flag-waving crowd waiting for them in the rain. "No one told us we couldn't," remarked one marine about filming their war experiences on home video cameras, "so we did." Many of the reservists thought they might be sidelined to some insignificant duty where they wouldn't screw up the real war. That was not to be. Lima Company saw significant battle and lost 23 comrades during their seven month tour. You see first hand how and why. The film alternates between their home videos of the war and their commentaries about their experiences once they got home. We also hear several families relive how and when they heard that they had lost a son in Lima Company. This is no Hollywood production, and that, along with learning what life is like for a soldier in battle, are the film's greatest strengths.