As part of HIFF’s Film For Thought program, the first screening of this film will be followed by an extended scholar-led Q&A discussion with the filmmakers to be hosted by Lola Quan Bautista, associate professor at the University of Hawai‘i Center for Pacific Island Studies.
ISLAND SOLDIER is a feature documentary that interweaves the personal stories of Micronesian soldiers serving in the US military and the experience of their families back home in the islands.
We journey from one of the most remote islands in the world to the front lines of war in Afghanistan in 2013. These non-US citizens mostly serve in the infantry and have extremely high casualty rates, dying at a rate that is five times higher than that of fellow soldiers born in the 50 states. In following the odyssey of young men from the island of Kosrae, we glimpse an intimate perspective from parents grappling with the absence of their precious children, humanizing the repercussions of America's foreign wars, and the changing fabric of a small island nation on the brink of economic and environmental collapse.
Told through the intimate personal odyssey of the Nenas, a family strives for their piece of the “American Dream”, and dealing with the consequences of military service against the backdrop of a pristine Pacific island on the brink of economic collapse.