Clearing the Way: Preview Night Documentary

A hard-hitting documentary based on Maj. Mark Gasparotto’s book of the same name, Clearing the Way chronicles the collective experience of Canadian Combat Engineers in Afghanistan in 2006-2007. One of the most dangerous places on earth, the Kandahar Province was witness to the largest battle fought by Canadians since the Korean War and the largest combat operation in NATO’s history at the time. The 23rd Field Squadron quickly became the number one target on the Taliban’s list.

“Overseas, a good day was when no one was killed, no one was hurt. You would never describe a day like that in Canada.”

 Copyright Joint Media Group Inc.

Copyright Joint Media Group Inc.

The film holds special meaning for director/producer Paul Culliton’s and makes for a touching tribute that honours the members of the 23rd Field Squadron who were hurt or lost in battle. “This is a film of the “Youtube” generation of soldiers. A majority of footage was shot by the soldiers themselves. By 2006 personal camcorders had become small enough and affordable enough that for the first time in Canadian military history, soldiers began carrying them in the field. They documented their war and camp life experiences first-hand, the result being that we have actual POV battle footage as seen through the eyes of our soldiers in the field.” Combined with interviews with the soldiers who were there, Clearing the Way takes the viewer into the eye of the storm and the gritty reality of war.

We are proud to have a strong Southwest Ontario connection to this film. Author, Maj. Mark Gasparotto and producer/director, Paul Culliton are both London residents. The entire film crew comprises of Londoners, including students from Fanshawe College. A majority of the interviews have been shot at St. Thomas Armoury, St. Thomas.

Forest City Film Festival proudly presents the World Premier of Clearing the Way on October 26th. We hope to see you there!

Nandita Dutta