One of my absolute favorite Fantastic Fest movies last year (review right here) was I Declare War, which provides an exhilirating representation of the stakes of playtime, as well as a touching look at the ephemeral relationships of childhood. There are a few high-concept touchstones in this Lord Of The Flies genre, but I Declare War is raw in a way The Hunger Games could never hope to be, and grounded in a way that even Battle Royale could not manage.
I’m excited for more people to see this film from Canadian filmmakers Jason Lapeyre and Robert Wilson, so I’m glad to see distributor Drafthouse Films starting the release process. I Declare War will be available on VOD in two weeks on July 26th, and in “select theaters” on August 30th.
This trailer is going to serious rile some people up, and I can only imagine clips of it on the evening news with “Kids With Guns” headlines and much hand-wringing over releasing a
movie with such subject matter considering recent events in our country. The YouTube upload alone already has dozens of comments mentioning a generation of kids “raised on Call Of Duty,” as if kids haven’t played War for hundreds of years. Hell, I grew up throwing pine
cones at my cousins in woods just like the ones in the movie every sunday for years, and I was never really a gamer (Grand Theft Auto III and my career as a teen carjacker came later, of course).
The problem is that no one will have seen the film and the way it is juxtaposing fantasy and reality, and with sophistication the film pulls back from the violence at proper moments. This is not an exploitation film, and the main concern is not reveling in exploding children- the goal is to capture some very acute emotional moments unique to childhood. The artillery is a means to an emotional end