The Road to Guantanamo

Synopsis: In 2001, four Pakistani Britons, Ruhal Ahmed, Asif Iqbal and Shafiq Rasul and another friend, Monir, travel to Pakistan for a wedding and in a urge of idealism, decide to see the situation of war torn Afganistan which is being bombed by the American forces in retaliation for the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Once there, with the loss of Monir in the wartime chaos, they are captured by Northern Alliance fighters. They are then handed them over the American forces who transport them to the prison camps at the Guantanamo Bay base in Cuba. What follows is three years of relentless imprisonment, interrogations and torture to make them submit to blatantly wrong confessions to being terrorists. In the midst of this abuse, the three struggle to keep their spirits up in that face of this grave injustice.
Production: Roadside Attractions
  4 wins & 6 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
95 min

The only thing I know for certain is that

these are bad people.

We look forward to working with the Blair

Governnment to deal with the issue

My parents went to Pakistan

and they saw a bride for me.

My mum come back said I

should go out to Pakistan and get married.

So I got a ticket and I went.

Can I help?

I'm all right.

Have you got everything?

-I'll be ten minutes.

-Okay, hurry up, quickly.

I didn't really wanna go

because I had a job, I was working.

But she was telling me

"lt"s time for you to go to Pakistan"

I left from Birmingham Airport.

And from there I went

straight to Faisalabad.

And then I caught a taxi to my village.

My father was there at the time.

- Oh, Salaam. Hello, Asif, how are you?

- Good. i'm alright.

I was there for about four days.

I saw the girl and I decided

I would get married.

So I phone Ruhel.

-Hello, Ruhel?

- Asif, what go on? I ain't heard

from you in long, man.

Well, when he asked me to go to his

wedding, I thought "Yeah, why not?"

"End of the day he's my friend

and I should go!"

And also, it' be great holiday.

See you later, all right.

- Come back soon.

- All right. I'll come back soon.


I wanted to go to Asif's wedding,

plus I hadn't been to Pakistan for like 13 years

And I wanted to see

some of my family again.

-You got a passport, yeah? Visa? everything?

- Yeah, i got it, man.

- You all right, Monir, yeah?

- Yeah, i'm good, man. How are you?

oh, Can't believe we're going to Pakistan, man.

It's gonna be mad.

Mlonir was a very nice guy

He was Bengali like me

He would never say anything

bad against anybody.

We landed at Karachi.

We didn't want to stay in the hotel

cos we thought it'd be expensive.

So we went to a mosque.

- Salaam alaikum.

- Alaikum salaam.

Crowds marching in the streets

of Karachi today...

...organised by Pakistan's Islamic parties,

they're supporters of the Taliban.

It's one sign of the politcal turmoil that seems...

certain to follow American military

intervention in Afghanistan

We spent about a week in Karachi.

Walked around sightseeing.

Going shopping, just chilling out.

Shafiq went to visit his family... me and Monir had

a few days to ourselves.

They were supposed to come

to the Village, but, instead...

...I ended up going to Karachi.

When Shafiq came back to Karachi,

he brought his cousin Zahid with him.

- Where are you from in Pakistan?

- I'm from Multan.

Ruhel was kind of like my best friend, yeah.

Even though he was Bengali.

I'Ve known Asif since the day he was born.

- What's been going on, man?

- Mainly I've just been shitting.

It was Friday prayers and we were

walking past the mosque.

A lot of people were going in,

so we went in with them

The bombing of Afghanistan!...

...the forcible change

of power in Afghanistan...

...this can only lead to chaos and terror.

People get hyped.

Then they start shouting slogans out.

The preacher was saying "You should help

the Afghani people wherever you can".

And also was thinking of going to see what

Afghanistan is really like.

If everyone agrees to go, then we go.

Because it's only 250 rupees.

If we're going there, we're going,

For experience and Two: To help

You know the food there as well...

You know the naans?

Big naans, you know that. Big naans.

I've seen naans this big.

What language do they speak there?

Can I speak Urdu to them or what?

- I think they speak Pushtu there.

- Pushtu?

We don't know yeah, basically....

The only way we know is if we go and see it.

Grab that cushion, man.

Give him the rice and that.

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Michael Winterbottom

Not to be confused with the classical scholar Michael Winterbottom (academic). Michael Winterbottom (born 29 March 1961) is an English filmmaker. He began his career working in British television before moving into features. Three of his films—Welcome to Sarajevo, Wonderland and 24 Hour Party People—have competed for the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival. Winterbottom often works with the same actors; many faces can be seen in several of his films, including Shirley Henderson, Paul Popplewell, John Simm, Steve Coogan, Rob Brydon, Raymond Waring and Kieran O'Brien. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "The Road to Guantanamo" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 14 May 2021. <>.

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