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May 28, 2008

Blood Diamond

This was one movie I have been waiting to see. My reading habits over the years had ensured that I was enlightened of the truth about diamonds at an early age which cannot be said of the majority of female population in the United States. Blood Diamond is Hollywood's translation of the evil truth behind the 'forever-diamond' for the masses. Hope it was successful in educating atleast some.

The movie is Hollywoodsy in parts, then again Hollywood cannot escape Hollywood. That can be excused when movie is doing a social service. The three main anchors of the story are Zimbabwean white-farmer's son turned diamond smuggler Danny Archer played by Leonardo Di Caprio, the Mende(an African tribe) fisherman from Sierra Leone, Soloman Vandy(Djimon Hounsou) and an American journalist Maddy Bowen(Jennifer Connelly.)

Coincidentally just before this movie landed in my hands, I was reading African novelist Ahmadou Kourouma's book "Allah is not Obliged" , the novel about a child soldier in West Africa. There were parts of the book which were hard to digest, the inhuman transmutation that ordinary children undergo to become child soldiers. The movie shows that it is the reality in the war-torn regions of Africa, portrayed by the ruination of Soloman Vandy's family. Di Caprio is a good choice for these exotic white man roles.

The film makes a not-so-veiled finger-pointing at the diamond giants De Beers, by calling the main diamond merchants with another Dutch name, Van De Kapp. I do not know whether the exaggerated over priced stone that cost millions of third world lives each year will fall from grace in the eyes of dreamy brides in Western world with just one film. But Edward Zwick, hats off to you, you did put some of Hollwood's money in for a good cause. More than what most people do. Review: Go watch it and remember diamonds are forever once you buy them, they have little or no resale value. You can be fooled once, but fooled forever?