Shades Of Words

Iwo Jima – Part 1


untitledI am not familiar with a lot of  world history. WWII has always fascinated me and  I have always had  a great deal of  reverent respect for the people who fought and died in WWII. I generally like to consume all the matter out there on WWII and often end up getting depressed for days.  I had been looking forward to watch the Clint Eastwood productions of ‘Letters from Iwo Jima’ and ‘Flags of our Father’  for quite some time. These movies depict  the most horrific battlegrounds of WWII from both the American and Japanese perspective.

 ‘Letters from Iwo Jima’, shot in Japanese, depicts the story of the unarmed, untrained and outnumbered Japanese army trying to stand against the American sea and air attack at Iwo Jima. The volcanic island  of Iwo Jima  was an important roadblock that needed to be overcome to attack the mainland. Under the leadership of , Lieutenant General Tadamichi Kuribayashi, the Japanese army followed a uncoventional defence strategy, and built caves and tunnels across the island. It is these caves and tunnels that turned the battle  from the predicted 3 day matter to a 35 day battle.

The letters written by the General were the basis for the filming of them movie. Now you know the Japs are the bad guys, but, as you watch the movie, you can’t help but feel an empathy for the poor young soldiers holed up in those caves, waiting for US to attack, waiting to die. They know they are outnumbered, and they know they are never going home…but they must defend their homeland till their last breath. You realize as you watch this movie, that if war has a point, then it’s not for the people who participate in it. Separated from home and their lives, they are fighting for someone else’s cause. Murder is a crime. But during war time it becomes acceptable. Strange, isn’t it?

I found the movie depressing and very moving. I will recommend this to anyone who likes watching serious cinema.


Author: Vipula

Before talking about who we are, we’d like to tell you a bit about how and why Shades of Words came into being. It all started with the idea of “A place where we could share with likeminded people about things we enjoy. From books to music to movies to travel; Shades of Words was to be a place about the best of our experiences” We thought about why should anyone read us? The answer was that whatever we review would be a mix of our experience of the thing along with interesting and useful information about it. So in case you are reading us regularly or even checking us out once in a while then we have succeeded in our efforts someway somewhere. Who are we? Known as Kapil Sood and Vipula Gupta, we thought of Shades of Words on one fine Sunday afternoon. Tired of writing interesting RFP’s and project documentation; we decided to give this a shot. Yes! We work in Indian IT industry. Cupid struck us while were innocently slogging together on the highly intricate job of formatting and beautifying documents! And since then, we have been working together to establish Shades of Words as a place that we can claim as ours. (Because buying a house is still years away!) What else? Kapil also writes some blogs which you can read here and here.

2 thoughts on “Iwo Jima – Part 1

  1. ok i’m not a watcher of serious cinema but I can say this from my reading…no matter how empathetic you feel for the Japanese army here…documented history points out to the fact that they were also at some point interested in expanding their empire. Not to mention, every country was equivalently ruthless with the prisoners of war.

    And Sun Tzu’s book ‘The Art of War’ does highlight the fact that motivating the army is one of the most important aspects that any General should follow for winning a war! And he goes onto say a lot of stuff there 🙂 but then any long drawn war has its effects and they are mostly negative.

  2. I was not supporting the Japanese cause – all I was saying that the people who take the decisions to go to war are not the people who actually fight it out. Yes we need to fight for a greater cause..but i am sure when it comes to life or death..u would atleast once question the greater cause.

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