In the years after the 9/11 attacks, many people was in deep frustration and sorrow. They didn't know what to do or to think about the world anymore. Surely it was a tragic event, which cost many human lives. What before was a secure country, where travelling wasn't a nightmare and you didn't have to fear that someone from the government was tapping your phone and kept you under continuous surveillance , has now changed into a precarious place to be. People today, everywhere in the world, are still affected by the events, which took place in September 2001. People have also been coming with many different conspiracy theories about why it happened. Either by writing a book or making a movie, people have also been trying to give sensible, trustworthy stories about what happened. The question is now: Do we have to understand it, or can we live in a world, where we don't know why something that terrible occurs. Can we accept the fact, that some people are of such religious belief, that their belief is forcing them, not only to hurt themselves but also a thousands of people?
Exactly that is what the movie 'United 93' is trying to enlighten.
'United 93' is one of several movies, which was published few years after the 9/ 11 attacks. The movie was written and directed by the English filmmaker Paul Greengrass , and was released in 2006, five years after the actual attack. It is about one of the total 4 airplanes, which were high-jacked by terrorists on September 11, 2001. The difference from the airplane, United Airlines Flight 93 and the three others, is that this never reaches the target the four terrorists on-board decided it should. The passengers were 'simply' caused to revolt. When the story of the movie not only takes place at one location, but two, we get a parallel between the one location, earth, and the other location, on-board Flight 93. This is a good way for the author to illustrate all the details and the fact that when you are on an airplane, you have absolutely no idea what is happening around you.
When we meet the characters, we don't get a further introduction of them, we see them like we were sitting right next to them. This gives us the feeling of being on-board the airplane, which also makes it, even more frustrating because we as audience, know that the airplane has been high-jacked.
Given the fact that the passengers doesn't know about the highjacking, also makes it a bit difficult for them to do anything about it. It is first when some of them begin to call family and relatives, that they become aware of the attack against World Trade Center in New York. 'And that's when they knew that this plane wasn't just going to be flown back to the airport. Once those people who were on-board knew it. They knew that there was no going back, this was a new reality'
The film is based on a truth story and it was exactly the many calls from the hostages on-board the plane, that Greengrass used to make the film as realistic, as even possible. Otherwise he used handheld cameras to be his filming method. In that way he made sure to follow the single person as close as possible the effect of the handhold camera, was also to get every natural movement from the airplane with. For example when the airplane is shaking, so is everything in the picture and we become aware of when something not meant to happen takes place; it is a sign that something is wrong. The same way Greengrass managed the filming; he also managed the sound and the sound effects.
Even though the story is told from an objective 3rd person narrator, we still get a little insight of what the different groups of people are thinking. That is to say because the camera 'chooses' to be the places, where the important thing happens. And when the camera has the functions like a fly on the wall, we don't get to know the feelings of each person, but we get to know what they say.
What they say becomes very important in the superior theme of the movie, exactly 'Freedom fighter or terrorist'? The author puts his attention to make the movie, so authentic and non-racist as possible. To do that, he show us that when the human being is threatened, or is in an unsafe situation, it will need something to believe in, something to bring the hope back. Not only do we see the four terrorists pray to and for Allah and saying that everything will be all right, because Allah is with them, but we also see the hostages praying for god in hope for surveillance. Therefore the movie isn't trying to give us an, us against them relationship, but it is trying to make people see that there are more sides in one case.
Of course there is also a hidden message in the movie. As a passenger you are in the dilemma whether you should fight back or just be passive and let it happen. If the people on-board the airplane didn't engage the terrorists the way they did, it would maybe have had bigger consequences than 'just' another ruined house.
Source: Essay UK - http://islam.business/free-essays/media/911-attacks.php
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