Release Date: June 5, 2009
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THEATER OF WAR Bertolt Brecht's Mother Courage and her Children is widely regarded as one of the most important plays of the 20th Century and a powerful, punishing statement of protest against the grim folly of war.
Brecht's drama is often staged in Europe, but it has rarely been given major productions in the United States; however in 2006, with the ongoing war in Iraq occupying the minds of many in the United States, playwright Tony Kushner prepared a new English translation of Mother Courage and director George C. Wolfe persuaded Meryl Streep to return to the stage to play the lead in a production that ran for free in New York's Central Park for four weeks.
Filmmaker John Walter examines this landmark production in the documentary Theater Of War. In addition to featuring excerpts from the play, Theater of War offers a behind-the scenes look at the creative process behind the staging of Mother Courage, and includes interviews with most of the creative team.
Walter also offers insights into Brecht's tumultuous life and career, the history of his masterpiece, and what many regard as the play's definitive staging, starring Brecht's wife, actress Helene Weigel. Theater Of War received its premiere at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival.