The documentary WARD 54, written and directed by Italian war correspondant Monica Maggioni, produced by Rai Cinema and Mediakite, and internationally distributed by Rai Trade, has been awarded the Michel Mitrani prize during the closing ceremony of the FIPA's 24th edition (International Festival of Audiovisual Programs) in Biarritz.
Presented out of competition in the "Aspects of European Production" section, WARD 54 focuses on the way the U.S. Army sidelines soldiers returning from Iraq exhibit post-traumatic stress disorder. One of them, U.S. soldier Kristofer Goldsmith, was responsible for photographing and classifying Iraqi corpses. Confronted with the horrific sight of a mass grave, he started experiencing nightmares and flashbacks and once back home, he was unable to come to terms with this experience. He reached out for help but nobody seemed to understand him.
An accusation towards an America ready to send soldiers to war but not willing to handle the trauma of those who return.