Sunday, October 22, 2006

Nugget of Truth: The Last King of Scotland

What a powerful movie about the life of Idi Amin! The story was told through the eyes of a young Scotish doctor who came to work at a mission in Uganda. The progression of how this doctor is woed by Amin, brought closer and closer to him, then Amin's true nature is revealed to the doctor. The film shows Amin's charm, his sense of humor, and above all his power. The viewer, like the doctor are taken in by it all. If you do not know the true story of Idi Admin, you would be just as shocked as the doctor is to find it out. The first 3/4 of the movie you have hints of the death and destruction, but there is a part of you rooting for Amin. The last 1/4 of the movie is shocking, graphic, and sad.

The Nugget of Truth comes as the doctor is first starting to see how cruel Amin possibly is. The youngest of Amin's wife tells the doctor, "He has always been this way. He has just chosen now to show you." That is our nugget.

How can you believe what you see? Integrity unfortunately is not the norm. Hypocrisy abounds in this day and age. Corrupt leaders rule with an iron fist and crush those they are suppose to be serving. My heart goes out to those in Africa. While in Rwanda we stayed near one of Amin's houses. During Amins rule over 300,000 Ugandans were murdered. In Rwanda over a million people were killed in 100 days. Why? During the film you get caught up in the life of Amin and the doctor. But there is an unsee character throughout the film. That is the people of Uganda. At the end of the film, once you realize what all has been going on. As you see the death, the destruction, the corruption... a scene flashes on screen. It was a repeat of a scene at the beginning of the movie. It is kids running after the van, smiling and waving. That is the Africa I know. The joy, the hope, the life of the African people. Why must so many die?

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:3


TiNA said...

Since people keep asking what does Scotland have to do with Idi Amin. Idi Amin was put in power by the British (should I say English) government. Then they wanted him to be like a puppet. He saw himself as over throwing English rule. A joke in one of his speeches is that Scotland has asked him to come and do the same... They will make him the last king of Scotland. He plays on the fact that both the Scots and the Ugandas do not want to be ruled by England. That is another reason he befriends this Scotish doctor, b/c they both have a hatred for the English. It is not a huge theme in the movie, but it is there.

Danielle said...

I gotta make time to see this!

richard said...

Ran into your blog and comments about the movie and thought i should share this. It is just a movie hence the story isn't at all true asides the fact that at a time there indeed was a mad ruler in Uganda called Amin and that there was the plane hijacking. If you consult wikipedia you'd find out the young doctors character was loosely based on a fellow named Bob Astles, who was neither Scottish nor a doctor. Twice married, he was an English adventurer who worked for Amin while running a pineapple farm as well as an aviation service. He later said, "I kept my eyes shut, I said nothing about what I saw, which is what they liked."
Astles eventually became the head of Amin's anti-corruption squad. "Until today, what Astles did or did not do during Amin's brutal tenure is conjecture," the Wikipedia article concludes. "He was feared, and considered by many to be a malign influence on the dictator; others thought he was a moderating presence."
Good movie but thats all it is 'a good movie'.