How much destruction do you need before you claim victory?

Andre Liohn is a Brazilian war photojournalist and father who is trying to find a balance in his life where he can both raise his children and expose the horrors of war, beginning in 2011, covering the Libyan Civil war and continuing through the summer of 2017 as he covered “Offensive Against ISIS” in Mosul, Iraq.

Andre, armed with his camera, documents everything he can while dodging bullets and avoiding mortars in some of the most dangerous circumstances. Following the deaths of three of his colleagues, Andre is determined to show the world what’s going on and how devastating the conditions of war can be. Terrifying images of dead bodies littered in the streets, piles of empty shell casings and screaming families will do some serious damage to the mental wellbeing of any person, but when it’s a father separated from his family, the narrative hits harder.

Co-directed by Maria Carolina Telles, whose father had his own obsession with war itself during WWII, and Aleksei Abib, break up the terrifying war footage with a tender story about Andre’s family. His parents, who still live in Brazil, influenced Andre’s perception of what life could be like in the rest of the world. The documentary also shows his relationship with his two small children, who live in Italy, deal with their father’s extremely dangerous job. They are frustrated at him as they are too young to fully understand what he’s doing.

YOU ARE NOT A SOLDIER holds nothing back. An unflinching look at the horrors of war and the struggles of a father trying to do the best he can by his children and to make his mark on the world by doing something other people might be afraid of. There are beautiful images of tranquility mixed in with the reality of death. A bold exploration into what people go through when reporting the news that most mainstream media ignores.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Doc Edge Festival 2021 will screen the Australasia premiere of YOU ARE NOT A SOLDIER. The documentary is available online from June 4 – July 11. Tickets and more information are available HERE

Doc Edge Festival 2021 Review – YOU ARE NOT A SOLDIER

Reviewed online (screener provided by publicist), June 11, 2021. Rating: TBC. Running time: 110 min.

PRODUCTION: An Elo Company production. Producers: Nelson Botega, Flavia Prats Feffer, Ruben Feffer, Vítor Krijnik, Sabrina Nudeliman. Executive producers: André Antunes, Ariene Ferreira.

CREW: Directors: Maria Carolina Telles, Aleksei Abib. Writer: Aleksei Abib. Cinematography: Ignacio Aronovich, Andre Liohn. Editing: Pablo Pinheiro, Edu Varallo. Music: Ruben Feffer.

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