Waltz with Bashir
The film depicts Ari Folman, the film’s director, retracing his steps to find out what happened during the war as he has no recollection of what happened during the war. Symbolic code is present throughout the film as the central character, the young and the old Ari Folman, do their best to come to terms with the fact that they stood by as a massacre took place. The central character is shown delving into post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) that tends to suppress memories of the massacre and the war in Folman’s mind. The rejection of reality by Folman signifies the wider social implications under which Israeli society has chosen to forget Sabra Shatila.
Additionally, “Waltz with Bashir” utilizes various semantic codes to further its ideas. Elements such as imagery and music are used in order to further grueling details of the buildup to the massacre. For example, the central character has flashbacks of one incident only where he and two friends are bathing in the sea and thousands of flares light up the sky. Similarly, a friend of Folman from the war has nightmares of twenty six dogs chasing him – the same twenty six dogs he killed during the war as a sniper. Various kinds of proairetic codes have also been utilized such as gun fights, rolling tanks, dying horses, deaths of innocent civilians etc.
Overall, “Waltz with Bashir” combines semantic code, proairetic code and symbolic code in order to portray grueling facts that are grounded in reality but are denied nonetheless.