States of Independence
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Watch a harrowing excerpt of The Kill Team

Director Dan Krauss documents one man who went from innocent whistleblower to accused of murder in this doc about killing for sport in the throes of war

As part of our new summer US project States of Independence we've invited our favourite 30 American curators, magazines, creatives and institutions to takeover Dazed for a day. 

Oscilloscope – the independent film distributor, started by Beastie Boy Adam Yauch, behind some of the past decade's coolest indie releases like Teenage & 12 O'Clock Boys – is taking over! They share their wealth of knowledge in a creative manifesto, take a look at a batch of new talent, and pen some love letters to the hottest directors…

In this clip, taken from The Kill Team, director Dan Krauss presents us with raw, honest interviews and footage from U.S. army infantry serving their country in Afghanistan. The story centres on Specialist Adam Winfield, who – after attempting to alert the army to the sport killing of unarmed civilians – was wrongly accused of first-degree murder. While transitioning from scenes of armed soldiers travelling through Afghan landscapes to interviews with the men that were actually there, we get a frank depiction of what ‘honoring your country’ actually entails.

Hearing the men describe their highs as “like a scene from Top Gun” and their lows as “bullshit” and “hating life” enables a frank understanding of life on the ground from soldiers defending the U.S.

After the director heard of Winfield's plight, he “immediately sensed there was a deeper story to be explored”. “The psychological consequences of this story are far more troubling to me than the gruesome nature of the atrocities,” explains Krauss.

This troubling and unsettling story has opened up the hearts of many and given a true insight into the moral and legal tribulations of a soldier. This documentary, originally presented at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2013, has been awarded Best Documentary Feature and the Golden Gate award at the San Francisco International Film Festival. 

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