A well-made documentary can deliver an experience in a way few mediums can match.

A well-made documentary can deliver an experience in a way few mediums can match.

"Restrepo" is such a film, a raw and intimate portrait of the one-year deployment of a small platoon at a remote - and astonishingly dangerous - outpost in a valley in Afghanistan.

The adage "war is hell" gets an update here. This war is boredom, punctuated by bursts of hell. The cameras never leave the valley or the sides of the soldiers, and the flow is only interrupted by studio interviews after the deployment ended.

Filmmakers Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger dug in and lived with the soldiers of "Restrepo," giving the film a remarkable honesty. It is also refreshingly and decidedly not political.

The only thing keeping it from true greatness is that the fly-on-the-wall approach doesn't translate into a clear narrative, but it's an eye-opening experience worth having.