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Munyurangabo-Movie Review 02/22/2011

Posted by Films to consider in African language film, African/Rwandan-Kinyarawanda language film, Drama, Movies.
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Munyurangabo (Rwandan-Kinyarwanda language) 2007

Official Selection, Berlin Film Festival
Winner, Grand Jury Prize (Chung), AFI Film Festival
Best Narrative Feature, Sarasota Film Festival
Official Selection, Un Certain Regard, Cannes Film Festival
Nominated, Breakthrough Director Award (Chung), Gotham Awards
Nominated, Someone to Watch Award (Chung), Independent Spirit Awards

From Film Movement; directed by Lee Isaac Chung

Starring Jeff Rutagengwa as Munyurangabo (Ngabo) and Eric Dorunkundive as Sangwa

Sangwa, a teen-aged boy, returns home after a three-year absence, accompanied by Ngabo, a friend from Kigali. They are in possession of a concealed stolen machete. After a short visit, the two plan to continue on their journey to find the murderer of Ngabo’s parents and kill him. Sangwa’s father becomes suspicious of Ngabo and tells his son that Ngabo is a Tutsi, the enemy of the Hutus and is not welcome in their home.

The film provides an intimate look at the tensions that continue between these two groups of people and the simplicity and hardship of life in the country of Rwanda. The young men who played the friends were themselves orphaned during the Rwandan genocide.

A very moving and excellent poem, “Liberation is a Journey” is recited by poet Edouard Bamporiki Uwayo, the poet laureate of Rwanda.

Click here for a New York Times article about award-winning Korean American filmmaker Chung. This was his debut full-length film.

97 min. Unrated. Adult themes.