The Invisible War

June 21st, 2012


The Invisible War

Still of Jessica Hinves in The Invisible WarStill of Kaye Whitley in The Invisible WarStill of Hannah Sewell in The Invisible WarThe Invisible WarStill of Kori Cioca in The Invisible WarStill of Kori Cioca and Rob McDonald in The Invisible War

An investigative documentary about the epidemic of rape of soldiers within the US military.

Release Year: 2012

Rating: 6.6/10 (148 voted)

Critic's Score: 74/100

Director: Kirby Dick

Stars: Helen Benedict, Anu Bhagwati, Susan Burke

An investigative and powerfully emotional documentary about the epidemic of rape of soldiers within the US military, the institutions that perpetuate and cover up its existence, and its profound personal and social consequences.

Helen Benedict - Herself
Anu Bhagwati - Herself
Susan Burke - Herself
Kori Cioca - Herself
Susan Davis - Herself
Elle Helmer - Herself
Amy Herdy - Herself
Mary Kay Hertog - Herself
Jessica Hinves - Herself
Anthony Kurta - Himself
Rob McDonald - Himself
Stace Nelson - Herself
Loretta Sanchez - Herself
Hannah Sewell - Herself
Jackie Speier - Herself


Official Website: Official Facebook | Official site |

Release Date: 3 Jan 2012

User Review

Do You Support Your Troops? Really? Really???

Rating: 9/10

"The Invisible War" is Oscar-nominated documentarian Kirby Dick's latest exploration of something terribly wrong with a venerable institution. Previous targets of Dick's camera have been the Catholic Church and its handling of child abuse cases ("Twist of Faith,") closeted politicians undermining advances in gay rights ("Outrage,") and Hollywood's incomprehensible ratings system ("This Film is Not Yet Rated.") This time he takes on the U.S. Military and its abominable record in the handling of sexual assaults on and by active duty service people.

The film consists of interviews of victims of sexual assault with cases going back to the 1960's up to the present day. The victims (both male and female) relate the horror inflicted upon them – not just by their perpetrators, but by a military justice system that fails them. Many of the victims state that the pain the went through with the assault was nothing compared to the hell that they went through in their attempts to seek justice, proper medical and psychological care for their trauma, and to return to some sort of normalcy in their lives.

Filled with damning statistics (20% of all female military personnel have dealt with sexual assault – does that not bother you?) and interviews with bureaucrats (both military and political,) it's the personal stories of those who tried to serve their country that get to you. These men and women entered to honorably serve and were driven out by a system that believes it's more important to protect one's own (usually meaning an officer) rather than support their troops.

The film is a call to action to make one simple change to the current military system. The decision whether to prosecute a case is made by the site commander. Often, this commander knows or has a relationship with the accused. Does this not seem like a conflict of interest? The film highlights a group that is seeking to change that and encourages the viewer to express their outrage to those who might be able to change things. They want you to do more than slap an "I Support Our Troops" bumper sticker on your car. Will you really support your troops? Really? The facts, figures, and stories in "The Invisible War" should turn the stomach of every citizen of our nation, regardless of political affiliation. This is not a political issue. This is a criminal justice issue. This is a human rights issue.

This is activist filmmaking at its best.


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