Friday, October 23, 2009

Hotel Rwanda

If you vaguely recall hearing the words "Rwanda" and "Tutsi rebels" and "genocide" on the news when you were a teenager (as we do), this moving film will very adequately bring you up-to-date on the horrible events in Africa that you perhaps didn't care anything about when you were 14 years old.

Don Cheadle, portraying a character similar to that of Oskar Schindler in Steven Spielberg's Schindler's List, does a terrific job as a Rwandan luxury hotel owner who makes the risky (and ultimately life-threatening) decision to turn his hotel into a refugee camp when his country is in the midst of war. In his relationships with his family, neighbors, employees, and others, we get to see the heart of a man whose compassion trumps his businesslike sensibilities.

This movie (first released in 2004) is by no means as powerfully put together as Schindler's List, but its story is just as heart-wrenching. Brooke cried, and I don't blame her for it.

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