Tuesday, July 26, 2005

IN MY COUNTRY

Few days ago, my wife and I were watching a movie called In my Country, this film based on the events in South Africa after the fall of the apartheid; this film had much potential as it revealed an amazing system of forgiveness and amnesty. People seeking amnesty had to come to court face the people they have hurt, (whether they killed their family members or they have tortured one of them) and re-tell the whole story of how and why they did it, if they could explain the whole story with understanding that all their actions were due to orders from above they would receive pardon. The slogan for this in South Africa was: The Truth will Set you Free. It was an intense experience as murderers and bandits would come and confess their crimes, for most part it was the white apartheid members who would admit their guilt, but it was clear in the film that tragically both sides took parts in murders and heinous acts. And BOTH were given the opportunity to be set free. This movie was going in all the right directions as it was revealing the spirit of people to be able to kill and also to be able to forgive even the most horrible crimes. As scripture it self teaches us of freedom through TRUTH. And then alas came the ‘brilliant’ (major sarcasm) direction of the director who decided to instead of keeping the film on this heart felt story of lies, pain and hurt of South Africa, to focus on the story of the two journalists who were covering these trials, as they began to have an affair with each other and find “love” in each others arms, I especially found it aggravating as Samuel L Jackson’s character (Washington Post, journalist) began to lecture one of the apartheid members about how can 'he' (the apartheid member a killer) look these people in the eye after the acts he had done, how can he seek pardon (rightfully so maybe)…what annoyed me was the fact that this same lecturer, same righteous journalist had just had an affair with a women and had no problem looking into her husbands eyes as if nothing had happened as if this crime was some how innocent, or unavoidable. I don’t know why the director decided to have the story shift into this affair, making the last quarter of the movie about their relationship, perhaps the “deep metaphors” of those wronged and later those who hurt had to apologize for the affairs, (although Samuel L Jackson’s character never apologized and was even irresolute, when he found out that the wife did) but yet there was no seeking of freedom from sin in this relationship as there was in the South African story as the lovers, only separated because He was leaving for America and after all she was married with children so perhaps the sense of duty was there, yet her comments, “my skin will never forget you” gave the impression that there was a longing for what they had if only things were a bit different, which then throws the metaphor out the window, since no murderer wanted to stay un-forgiven…even the once who were less repentant were shown as “evil”…but some how the journalists affair was not. What ever the reason was it just distressed me and made me wound up that even an important story such as the class struggle in South Africa has to be tainted with Hollywood’s affairs and as if to say that they were so disturbed by the horror they were hearing in the courts forced them to have sex…SIGH…as if this is ‘normal’ turn of events, as if it was almost expected. I am not going to write a conclusion of my thoughts here…I want to leave it open I want the thoughts that I have already wrote sit on this page and be…I want the final conclusion in this matter to be yours (if any one reads this)…and not mine…

4 comments:

Christopher Trottier said...

It is interesting how people in South Africa were able to forgive each other, but people in Israel cannot.

Jessica said...

I agree, Paul. This movie had amazing potential. It still did have very powerful moments. But the whole issue of the affair was poorly thought out. They could have just scrapped the affair all together or they could have explored the power of forgiveness and the idea of "what hurts you hurts me and hurts everyone". Instead, the husband was almost a non-issue. If they gave him a character, more lines and explored his pain and hurt and also explored the pain and hurt the affair would have realistically caused BOTH the journalists and their children - and THEN explored forgiveness and redemption (and also repentance), this movie could have been much better.
I'd also like to comment that Samuel L. Jackson is a terrible actor.

Jessica said...

Hey Paul - Could you give and update on what's happenning at camp?

Anonymous said...

Where did you find it? Interesting read »