Monday, July 13, 2009

Hotel Rwanda

While Terry George is best known for his script work he did open the eyes of many with this harrowing look at the conflict in Rwanda. The film has been attacked as being propagandic and misleading in it's political leanings but this is highly unfair. HOTEL RWANDA rightly focuses on one mans attempt to deal with a situation beyond rational thought. By now, many know the story told here even if they've yet to see the film as some tend to avoid it due to the subject matter. I understand this as I've met three people who survived these events and they are adament on one point, HOTEL RWANDA doesn't come close to depicting the true horrors which took place there. George uses a light hand directing here and it works well with Don Cheadle's work in the lead. Many people wanted this role, reportedly Denzel Washington and Will Smith were hot to take it and it's a good thing George held out for Cheadle as the film simply wouldn't have the same impact had he not been there. I cannot emphasise enough how amazing Cheadle's work is here and it still stuns me he lost the Oscar to Jamie Foxx that year. As great as Cheadle is he almost has the film stolen from him by Sophie Okonedo, another supremely casted character. Nick Nolte as the only fictitious though reality based character seems a little too American to be playing a Canadian peace keeper but even he blends into the grim picture. Like many great films, HOTEL RWANDA has scenes which will burn into your memory and these images are not pleasant but perhaps they are even more important now in these harsh economic times when many countries are trying to close their doors to immigrants and refugees. As conflicts of the nature seen in Rwanda continue to escalate around the globe it's essential we remember why these doors must remain open.


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