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the last king of scotland

went to go see the last king of scotland on friday. came away from it feeling, at best, lukewarm. (my friend downright hated it...sorry bout that.)

The Last King of Scotland Poster
the last king of scotland, based on a novel of the same name, is the story of the (fictional) personal physician of idi amin. while i don't have a problem with fictional characters parading in and out of films inspired by or about real personages (malcolm x comes immediately to mind - all kinds of fictional folks there) the film suffered from being almost totally about the fictional person, and only skimming the surface of idi amin's story.

idi amin is quite possibly one of the most notorious leaders in recent history, and yet, for some reason the film pretends that his personal physician could be completely unaware of his ruthless tyranny.* unlikely that someone on the inside, whom amin trusted, could be so isolated. and his actions alone, without the frontloaded plot concerning the privileged, young scottish doctor nicholas garrigan's improbable sexcapades in uganda, could have occupied an audience.

the performances by the actors, however, were not disappointing. forest whitaker played an alarmingly captivating amin, and james mcavoy (who was wonderful as mr. tumnus in the lion, the witch, and the wardrobe) had the part of the bored, well-to-do european youth looking for some excitement (and changing the world and feeling real important in the process) down pat. i can't fault the actors here at all. and not even so much the writing, because the dialogue was great...i think that the film could have done with some judicious editing in the storyboard phase. or perhaps some reimagining of it's dramatic structure, because while the elements of a good film were there (premise, cast, crew, etc) the sum of film did not turn out to be more compelling than its parts.

*i mean really...in the previous post, tropicália, i briefly mentioned literary artistic anthropophagy (cannibalism), the artistic aesthetic of "eating" other aesthetics. idi amin, on the other hand, has been accused of actual cannibalism. yeah. and that, as monumentally shocking a charge that is, was just a footnote in this film. and literary cannibalism gets mountains written about it every year.

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About me

  • I'm call me aja
  • From nyc
  • 20something, black, woman, reader, writer, about to be a student again. i think i'd like to be heard (or read). child/grandchild of immigrant folk. yearning to travel. desirous of wisdom. a little bit ordinary, but working at being less so.
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