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Blue Helmet: Casque Bleu

A film by Chris Marker

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Blue Helmet from Icarus Films on Vimeo.

“People willing to listen to you for almost an hour on Yugoslavia... There aren’t many of them.” —François Crémieux

For six months in 1994, François Crémieux served as a French UN peacekeeper near the Bosnian town of Bihać. He never saw combat, barely even experienced physical discomfort—but he was left deeply shaken by the experience.

In BLUE HELMET, director Chris Marker keeps the focus squarely on Crémieux, an eloquent young veteran who recounts his experiences rapid-fire, as though he’s been desperate to share them since returning home. The film consists entirely of Crémieux shot in closeup, interspersed with stills from his tour of duty.

The story he tells is one of infantry indifferent to peacekeeping ideals, training by racist officers, missions that range from occasionally useful to completely pointless, and rules of engagement that benefited only the aggressors. Despite its apparent simplicity, BLUE HELMET is a powerful first-hand account of a peacekeeping mission that didn’t just go wrong, but never had any opportunity to go right.

25 minutes / Color
French / English subtitles
Release: 2021
Copyright: 1995

For individual consumers (home video)

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Subject areas:
Balkans, France, Conflict Resolution, Eastern Europe, Government

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