Friday, November 23, 2007

At the Heart of Darkness

Blood Diamond

Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio (Danny Archer), Djimon Hounsou (Solomon Vandy), Jennifer Connelly (Maddy Bowen), Kagiso Kuypers (Dia Vandy), Arnold Vosloo (Colonel Coetzee)

There are times , though rare, when Hollywood opens its purse to a project
which otherwise would not have gained prominence. The story of the conflict diamonds in Sierra Leone is one such project. Agreed. The film is high on production value. It stars Leonardo Di Caprio, the reason why it run in the theatres, gernered award nomination for Di Caprio, and so on. Yet, you don't suspect the heart and efforts that went on making the film, and that the film after all makes a point and explain a completed piece of modern commercial and political history.
The balance between an issue-based project and its commercial viability is a tricky thing to achieve. The film succeeds in doing precisely that. Within the genre of a Hollywood pot-boiler, the film addresses two sensitive issues, conflict diamonds - how the rebel groups of the East African countries using slaves to mine diamonds, and sell them illegally to generate money to purchase weapons. The another issue is of child soldiers, children kidnapped to work as soldiers for the militia.
The film tells the story of Solomon (Djimon Hounsou, in a well-etched role for a supporting cast). The small world of his fishing village come crashing when rebel armies attack the village, Solomon is taken to the mines as a slave, as his family lands up in a refugee camp and his son is taken away as child soldier.
In the mine, Samuel finds a large diamond which he hides. The mine is attacked by another militia group and Samuel is sent to the prison in the capital. Here is meets a diamond smuggler, who comes to know about Samuel's rock, and strikes a deal with him. They are soon joined by an American journalist who is doing a research on the conflict diamonds.
Together they embark upon a journey through the war-ravaged country, with enemies at every corner.
The end is little melodramatic. But the actions have enough potency to make you sit glued before the screen.
At the end, Blood Diamond is a story well told, blood and violence included!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment