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The Plot of Blood Diamond, Essay Example

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Essay

Blood Diamond Summary

The plot of Blood Diamond is set in Africa during the Sierra Leone Civil War. Although at the surface, the conflict appears to concern blood diamonds, it is important to notice that the war is of a political rather than financial nature. Ultimately, the film focuses on the continuous struggles between the government loyalists and the rebel forces, which includes brutal fights as well as philosophical disagreement. The movie paints a reasonable picture of the brutalities of the war, and the action involved in such scenes leaves the viewer awestruck and curious as to what will happen next.

The movie is fast paced and full of events that are sometimes difficult to recall. However, the takeaway message from the presentation seems to be that occasionally disastrous events are inevitable and even when those in power recognize that the feud is becoming detrimental to both sides, they will not stop. An excellent example of this is when the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme is formed to put the blood diamond conflict to an end. Although there are those who wish to put an end to the fighting, without the complete majority in favor of this action as well, the conflict cannot be resolved.

Interestingly, this movie relates to many aspects of African American history in terms of conflict development. In most cases, majority power has led to great tragedy for both African natives and those who were raised in the Americas. Majority power is often extremely unfair, and it is the need of those with less power to rise up against those that suppress them in order to demonstrate their opinions and begin making a significant change to society.

The Last King of Scotland

The Last King of Scotland is an interesting tale because it blends African history with a sense of Eurocentrism. Although many aspects of the film appear to be from the European point of view since much of the story is told through the eyes of Dr. Nicholas Garrigan, a Scottish doctor, the film still manages to educate the audience about Ugandan pride that could potentially be extended to the understanding of other African nations as well. Aside from attempting to understand a culture from several perspectives, this is an interesting story because it allows the audience to view the political aspects and motivations of General Idi Amin in gaining control of the country.

In this movie, Scotland serves as a symbol for overcoming adversity. Since General Amin believed he was rebelling against the government in order to help Uganda gain independence, he was pleased that Dr. Garrigan was Scottish, which also helped the two form as close bond and learn to trust one another. This trust is also what let the two establish a common ground. Even though both Dr. Garrigan and General Amin had their own preexisting bias towards each other’s nations, they were allowed to look past this for a time.

Even though the story ended up disastrously for all those involved, it was interesting to see that two men from very different walks of life would be able to come together and exchange thoughts and ideas in an effective manner for some time. A major way that disaster can be prevented is by simply trying to understand one another. In the case of General Amin, this may have never been possible, but trying to understand is the first step in such an improvement.

The Troubled Terrain of Human Rights

This chapter discusses that although films are a useful vehicle in allowing human rights information to be passed to other individuals, this is not a maximally effective method. The primary problem that these films bring about is that they embed both truths and untruths, often in a manner in which it is difficult to distinguish the two. Prior to films, these messages were transferred between people in the form of narratives, which allowed for concise description. Although some embellishment was possible, it was often easier to determine when this was occurring, which would allow the listener to form his or her own opinion about the topic.

Essentially, film has become the modern vehicle of spreading human rights messages because it is what gets people’s attention. Cinema is highly popular, and when these stories are mixed with fiction could become compelling tales that will attract many to the theater to hear this message. Furthermore, even short trailers or commercials are likely to be heard because people living in the modern era tend to be more dormant than their predecessors. In addition, many individuals are less likely to read about topics that they believe will not interest them because it is somewhat time consuming. Thus, even though using film as a voice for these messages isn’t ideal, doing so will reach the greatest number of viewers, so it will continue to be done.

“Documentary films” could be considered a genre because they tend to mix the narrative style of storytelling with their own unique flare. Furthermore, they aren’t just documentaries because they aren’t purely factual. Rather, they are used to fuse fact and fiction in a manner that attempts to convince others to pay attention to the cause.

The Cited and the Uncited

This chapter explains that Hollywood films frequently mention Africa and are not necessarily accurate. Rather than depicting Africa as it actually is today, or was during the time period of the film, filmmakers tend to take advantage of stereotypes that the general public has of the continent. Therefore, viewing safaris and similar themes in these films are commonplace. Generally, these scenes lack the infrastructure that is realistically present in the country, which perpetuates these stereotypes. Therefore, when one watched a film that takes place in or is about Africa, it is important to notice these motifs. In discussion, it is also essential to ensure that these myths are not perpetuated.

Although there are many films that directly discuss Africa and perpetuate ideas about the continent and its people, there are many forms of media elsewhere in the world that adapt what is known about Africa that is used in art forms. For example, France has developed “African Grammar”, which is completely French, although it has negative connotations towards African culture. Furthermore, it perpetuates this feeling of Eurocentrism for those who partake in the enjoyment of this and similar art. Essentially, involvement helps spread negative or incorrect ideas about Africa as a whole, and many individuals living within France have not personally experienced a real example of what Africa is like for these ideas to be counteracted. Ultimately, it is important to promote that what is seen on the media isn’t always true and to ensure that everyone is able to gain a true understanding of what Africa is really like.

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