Saturday, May 19, 2012

Darfur (2009)

Yesterday I watched Renny Harlin's 5 Days of War (you can read my comments at the NinjaDixon tumblr), a good b-action movie disguised as a message-movie disguised as a b-action movie. Everything at once. Today I watched a similar movie, Uwe Boll's Darfur. Now, most idiots out there have seen House of the Dead and Alone in the Dark and decided that everything after that is the same thing. Now, I like these two movies - they are simple entertainment made for a lot less money than shitstorms like the Transformers or Twilight-franchises. What's interesting with Boll as a filmmakers is for every "silly" movie, and with that I mean über-commercial popcorn-movie he makes something totally different. Movies like Tunnel Rats, Stoic, Seed, Max Schmeling etc is very different from House of the Dead. They aren't even "fun" violent movies, they are plain disturbing and says more about humanity than very few other movies. Cynical stories about how humans really are. Darfur is the latest of these dramas, a very, very disturbing account of the genocide in Darfur.

We follow a gang or journalists and photographers on a routine mission in Sudan, together with representatives from an organizations that's there to observe. Only observe. They arrives to a small village and spends some time there interviewing the villagers. When they leave they see a Janjaweed convoy getting close to the village and they decide to go back, to just be there as international journalists - hopefully to stop the warriors from attacking the village. But everything goes very wrong...

Darfur is a very realistic movie. It's improvised by the actors and Boll also takes a documentary-approach in the style. Lots of handheld camera, without getting too shaky, lingering close-ups on sweaty faces and a camera that won't stop filming even when something we don't want to see happens. Some less intelligent reviewers have stated that this is just violent porn, that it's entertainment - but believe me, there's nothing entertaining or funny with what we're seeing in this movie. It's graphic yes, but I've seen worse - its more that first half hour of meeting the villagers that makes it so hard seeing them die from the hands of their enemies.

The acting is also very impressive, and its even more fun that Boll only uses actors like Billy Zane, Matt Frewer, Edward Furlong, Kristianna Loken etc - all who do amazing jobs creating realistic characters. I'm not familiar with the South African actors, but all of them are eerily realistic (some of them are also real victims of the terror in Sudan). I'm happy to say that Darfur is very far from the typical DTV movie and I'm actually quite happy that a lot of people out there probably choked on their pizzas after work watching this drama. They probably expected something very different.

Maybe it should be mandatory for every person involved in Lundin Oil to see this movie, for example our incompetent Minister for Foreign Affairs, Carl Bildt, who was involved in the genocide in Darfur indirectly through his work with Lundin Oil and still goes free. You know, you get a lot of power with important friends and millions on the bank. Here in Sweden we call him The Genocide Millionaire, and it's a quite fitting name for him - and a big shame for Sweden.

Give this movie a chance, read up on Lundin Oil and Carl Bildt, and ignore the real war-porn being produced in Hollywood: Saving Private Ryan, Black Hawk Down and the rest of the crap!


Anonymous said...

"Maybe it should be mandatory for every person involved in Lundin Oil to see this movie" you´re being naive...I think Bildt & co knows every little detail of whats going on......what amazes me is that fact that he is still in power.

So Boll made a serious message movie...? Cool...

Ninja Dixon said...

I'm sure you're correct! Maybe let everyone of Lundin's supporters see it instead!

Anonymous said...

Ninja: talks...everything else walks...hahhahah

I don´t think ethics is something that their investors think be honest...I could be wrong but I think their investors don´t care.