May 7, 2010
Studio: Zeitgeist Films
Director: Laura Poitras
MPAA Rating: N/A
Starring: Abu Jandal, Salim Hamdan
Copyright Holder: N/A
Official website: ZeitgeistFilms.com/TheOath
Academy Award®-nominated director Laura Poitras brings to audiences a singular work of high-risk filmmaking with this gripping documentary political thriller shot on location in Yemen. "The Oath" is the cross-cut tale of two men whose fateful meeting ultimately propelled them on very different courses with Al-Qaeda, Osama bin Laden, September 11, Guantanamo Bay Prison and the U.S. Supreme court. Abu Jandal is a taxi driver in Yemen and a free man, while the man he recruited, his brother-in-law Salim Hamdan, is the first man to stand trial before the controversial Military Commissions at Guantanamo Bay Prison. Abu Jandal and Hamdan's intertwined personal trajectories – how they became bin Laden's bodyguard and driver respectively – act as prisms that serve to explore and contextualize a world which has confounded the Western media. As Hamdan's trial progresses, his military lawyers challenge the court system, while back in Yemen the charismatic and elusive Abu Jandal dialogues with his young son, Muslim students and journalists in a chilling revelation of his personal post-9/11 belief system. "The Oath" offers unsettling glimpses of the international impact of the U.S. War on Terror and a rare window into the world of Al-Qaeda.