‘Drone’ promotes clear agenda


Poster for “Drone.” Image used under Fair Use copyright laws.

Brett Stover

140-Character Review: Provocative & biased, but entertaining. Leads you from strikes in Pakistan to scary sci-fi. Watch if you like solid geopolitical docs. 3.5/5
Drone,” a documentary directed by Norwegian director Tonje Hessen Schei, examines the cost of the U.S. military’s unmanned drone program has had on both the survivors of strikes and the men that remotely pilot them.
The film, which premiered for the first time in the United States on Thursday, seems to think it’s revealing earth-shattering truths to you when in fact it’s simply rehashing commonly-known statistics on the staggering numbers of innocent civilians killed by American drones. Most of the action alternates between one of the few former drone pilots to come forward about the program and the work of activists in the Waziristan province of Pakistan to bring accountability to the U.S. government.
The “narrative” of the film is sometimes unclear, however, as there is no logical progression of events. The film seems to take a semi-neutral stance on the issue throughout the beginning, but by the closing minutes it feels like blatant propaganda against the program. With a (very entertaining!) combination of footage, graphics and an apocalyptic score, “Drone” eventually suggests that the logical next step on the path of unmanned warfare is the landscape of a dystopian sci-fi novel.
Brett Stover