Tuesday, September 2, 2008

War Dance (2007) NR - 4 Stars

I really liked this movie about the Acholi Tribe of Uganda, struggling to stay alive, during the 20 years being victums of the Lord's Resistance Army. 90 percent of the tribe is living in refuge camps and of the 2 million children living here, many are orphans. One camp, Patongo is the most remote and vulnerable camp in the war zone and houses approx. 60,000 Acholi people along with armed military protection. This is the story of three brave children whom live in this camp but still manage to keep smiling as long as the music is alive inside of them.

Nancy, lived in the Kiteng Village and when the rebels came to visit her home and while the children watched, their mother and father were taken to the field where rebels killed and cut to pieces her dad. While her mother watched in horror, she was then forced to pick up her husband and bury him in parts. Rebels came back that night and took her mother away and Nancy was forced to be in charge of her three younger siblings. Later she would find her mother who was forced to work at another camp.

Dominic has lived in the war zone his entire life. His passion is playing the wooden Xylaphone and he is quit good at it. He was ubducted, along with nine other children while hiding from the rebels in a school. The rebels did horrible things to him in the woods he can still not talk about as they forced him, along with 39,000 other children to become child soldiers. Dominic bears the scar of being ordered by Rebels to kill two innocent farmers with their own hoes. He is haunting by the images of the "heads not moving but the legs still kicking."

Rose wants to go to Kapala for the competition in dance but since her parents are dead, she is forced to live with her aunt in camp nd do all the chores. She is extremly soft spoken with little self esteem. She remembers her mother forcing Rose to hide outside in the bushes denying she had and children. The rebels killed both her parents and placed their heads in the home's cooking pots and she is haunted by the fact that she hide in the bushes and did nothing to help them.

But these there children do still have something they can call their own and that is their Acholi culture and keeping it alive with music and dance. The music class in camp is determined to bring pride to their camp by winning the competition for best in dance. They travel 2 days over 200 miles to Kapala where they preform their traditional dance, the "Bwola." 8 catagories, 315 contestants and 3 days to cpomplete, the group does their Acholi people proud by winning the war dance catagory and Dominic won a new Xylaphone for his performance.

You can help their tribe by going to http://www.shineglobal.org/.

Directors: Andrea Nix, Sean Fine
Producers: Susan MacLaury, Mark Urman, Daniel Katz, Stephen Nemeth, Albie Hecht, Erik Cleage, Kari Kim, Andrew Herwitz
Writers: Andrea Nix, Sean Fine
I viewed 8/08

1 comment:

Sarah said...

I really wanted to see "War/Dance" in the theaters but never got the chance.

It sounds like a well-made, inspiring film. And what a soundtrack! Thanks to your recommendation, I'll definitely be renting it.