87' 2018 USA director: Luc Côté cinematography: Luc Côté editing: Luc Côté production: Les Films Adobe International
Millions of veterans of American wars pay an extremely high price for their duty on a daily basis. As a rule, their deep psychological wounds can’t be healed by pharmaceuticals or even traditional psychotherapy. Matt and Mike, the protagonists of From Shock to Awe, decide therefore to try a much older tradition: the Ayahuasca rituals from the Amazon. This emotional roller-coaster of a film doesn’t end, however, with a breakthrough brought on by their psychedelic trip. The road to a new life following the trauma of war is not an easy one—and their families also have to travel it with them. In telling this extremely moving human story, the filmmakers expose a glaring injustice: Those who are sent to the frontlines and given the power to kill are later denied power even over their own bodies, as they are forbidden the use of a treatment that could bring them liberation.