In Cinemas March 31

Thursday, January 26, 2006

The Tuesday Night Preview

On Tuesday night, the first major preview screening of Shooting Dogs took place in Central London. The 200-strong audience was largely made up of journalists, representatives from NGOs and charity organisations. Director Michael Caton-Jones was in attendance to provide an introduction to the film.

The response to the film so far has been fantastic, following on from the great acclaim that it won at the London Film Festival last year. The film has been heralded by a number of organisations who have recognised the importance of the film as a valuable tool in raising awareness of contemporary genocide. Please read below some of the comments we have had so far:

1)"I thought the film was absolutely superb. Certainly the most provoking and disturbing film I have seen in a very very long time."

Thomas Russon, People & Planet

2)"The film was brilliant in all aspects, narrative, casting, and most importantly impact. It was a beautifully crafted film."

Jo Ash, GAP (Gap Activity Projects)

3)"I went to see this film yesterday and was incredibly moved by it. It is such a powerful and well-made film and explores very well the choices that people have to make faced with unspeakable evil. I read the notes later and found the genesis of the film most interesting; filming in the location where this massacre took place gave a poignant immediacy to the film. Working in Rwanda as an aid worker and having lived there in 1977, I have always had a special place for that country in my heart and to see the genocide portrayed so graphically,but without gratuitous violence was really moving. It brought back memories of happier times but also trying to understand why this horror took place; I’ve often wondered what happened to some of the people I knew. Where was God in all this is a question I’ve often asked and I don’t have an easy answer, though I’m sure there were some brave people who did what they could to protect others. But certainly it was a time of unspeakable evil.

I thought the acting was very good and it must have been hard for some of the people, actors and technicians, to relive those terrible events. All in all, it was a courageous film to make and one that will stay with me for a long time."

Anne Bonger, Aid Worker in Central Africa

4)"An extraordinarily Powerful Film...a must see"

Baz Bamigboye, The Daily Mail

5)"The film left me feeling shattered. It was so real felt I was right back there in the middle of the madness. The film is the most powerful portrayal of that terrible time. What happened in Rwanda wasn't just about Rwanda - it was about all of us. The film brilliantly captures that central truth. A Brilliant and Powerful film"

Feragl Keane, BBC (reporter in Rwanda in 1994)

6)"I have rarely seen such a powerful and important movie and really believe that it is vital that as many people go and see it when it is released in the UK."

Joost van der Zwan Communications Officer London School of Economics (LSE) Crisis States Research Centre



Hugh Dancy and Claire-Hope Ashitey

40 Comments:

At 1:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We watched the film in conjunction with Holocaust Memorial Day. The film was incredibly moving and amazingly powerful. I only hope that it gains the attention it deserves and highlights where we went wrong in the Rwandan Genocide and the lessons we can learn.

 
At 7:33 AM, Anonymous Louise Hector said...

"I found Shooting Dogs extremely powerful and moving. I needed a few minutes just to gather myself together after having watched it.

The film could have been written with this year's Holocaust Memorial Day theme (One Person Can Make A Difference) in mind, with its focus on the moral choices that Joe and Christopher make and the ultimate sacrifice of Christopher to save the children.

It was also interesting to see included the references to the Holocaust and Bosnia, it is exactly the message that we are trying to get across. It is important that we learn the lessons of the Holocaust, Rwanda and other genocides if we are ever to be successful in preventing such tragedies in the future."

Thanks

Louise Hector

Community Liaison Manager

Holocaust Memorial Day Trust

 
At 5:53 AM, Blogger hasha said...

I've worked on this film while shooting, and by chance(if I can call this like that)this was an history of mine cause i've lost a part of my family during 1994 genocide in ETO, this film is telling the truth around 90%, so If u really wanna know what happend 2 us, don't miss it

 
At 8:19 AM, Anonymous Rob Sixsmith - MTV Movies said...

Much enjoyed last nights screening. Hurt is fantastic in the lead role and the story is a powerful, if familiar, one. It will fare well with British audiences who will find much to relate to here. Glad to see that it was filmed in Kigali - it lent the entire film a certain legitimacy.

Rob Sixsmith - MTV Movies

 
At 8:20 AM, Anonymous Oginia Tabisz - Guardian Film said...

I really haven't been so affected by a film for a long time. It was utterly harrowing, moving and shocking.
Don't know what else to say really about such a horrific subject.

Oginia Tabisz - Guardian Film

 
At 8:22 AM, Anonymous Paul Griffiths - ioFilm said...

I enjoyed Shooting Dogs.

- basicaly a very simple story told effectively enough, mostly through Dancy's character

- not preachy, despite it's 'faith' themes and its examination of the UN's presence

- a timely release as the West's presence in Iraq is becoming more untenable as things go on and I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of reviews/features mention this

- stands up well to comparisons with Hotel Rwanda

- feels a little lengthy but I can't think of scenes or episodes that it could have easily lost

- shocking and realistic violence, but not graphic

- great performance from Hurt, good from Dancy and Ashitey

Paul Griffiths - ioFilm

 
At 6:56 AM, Anonymous Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Birmingham said...

I would like to express my appreciation of the film and to say how very moving I found it. It has clearly been made with great sensitivity, indeed affection, for all those caught up in the tragedy at the Ecole Technique Officielle. The film portrays the dilemmas faced by many people with perceptiveness and respect. I was particularly appreciative of the fact that if anything the film understates not only horrendous nature of what occurred, but also the human dilemmas. In this it leaves space for the viewers own imagination and reflection.

I was particularly impressed by the way the characters of Father Christopher and the young English teacher were drawn. The crises that they faced were not minimised nor over dramatised. I think everyone who sees this film will always retain a vivid memory of the terrible events that took place. They will also be drawn into a profound reflection on the limitations of human nature as well as the demanding summons of the Christian faith.

I am grateful to have had a chance to see this film and I look forward to its general release from the 31st March.

With every good wish,

Yours sincerely

Vincent Nichols
Archbishop of Birmingham

 
At 9:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have just seen the movie at the Cleveland International Film Festival. It's an excellent movie, well made! It is not only a must-see historical piece about the Rwandan genocide, but also a strong indictment against the UN and generally the attitude of the "white man" in this conflict. The way the TV reporter compared her emotions about Bosnia and Rwanda is heartbreaking, but unfortunately very true.

 
At 12:46 PM, Anonymous Charmain Watts said...

I haven't yet seen the film as the first release date in Wales is in April. However I think it is wonderful to hear such fantastic comments. Having returned from Rwanda very recently and fallen in love with the country and her people; I feel that it is so important for us all to remember what happened. I Visited the Genocide memorial in Kigali which was incredibly moving; looking at photographs and mass graves of the victims was heartbreaking, however it is the way that WE do not forget. Included in the memorial, which I found touching, were rooms dedicated to all other genocides that have occurred throughout the world.
I also hope that shooting Dogs gains as much attention as possible, ensuring we don’t forget now what we forgot back then!

 
At 5:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Charles Nkerabigwi

It is fantastic to show the world what happened in Rwanda from 6April 1994, but all film makers including HOTEL RWANDA are focusing their attention on what happened from the day the Rwandese president was killed till july 1994 when tutsi rebels captured the country, it is important to know that many people are interested to know how the repatriation of tutsi refugees went and whether the rwandese drama ended with the fall of rwanda into rebels hands or whether more atrocities were perpetrated afterwards...
charlesrwanda@hotmail.com

 
At 5:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The film was very moving and disturbing. We must learn the lessons.The tragedy that journalists didnt really tell the story in April 1994, really cost many lives.

 
At 6:40 AM, Anonymous Andy Jacobs said...

As with Schindler's List, you're not exactly hard-pressed to guess the direction Shooting Dogs is taking. There are few surprises here. But that doesn't make it any less affecting. If Rwanda is a scar on the conscience of the United Nations, this film picks at its stitches. A passion project for those involved, it is angry and earnest and highlights an episode the international community have never quite dealt with: how it sat back and watched as thousands of Africans were killed.

There's a particularly effective scene where Dancy sits with a TV reporter (Nicola Walker), as she admits the reason she is less affected by the brutality she sees in Rwanda than in Bosnia: "Over here, they're just dead Africans." It's a potent point, too often unspoken when considering Western attitudes to the 'Dark Continent'. Of the performers, Dancy looks effectively shell-shocked but it is Hurt who excels. The veteran actor makes his man of the cloth both admirable and ambiguous - the heart and soul of an unusually thoughtful film.

Andy Jacobs

BBC Movies - reviews

 
At 5:02 AM, Anonymous Graham Moses said...

After watching the preview last night it was an exhausting experience of mans inhumanity to man. It showed how impotent the UN as an organisation is. This film was a powerful indictment of African politics and an amazing insite into the choices people have to make and how it will change their lives for ever. It was ineteresting to see how the UN would not use the Genocide work.

 
At 2:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

AS A RWANDAN SURVIVOR I WAS LAST DISAPOINTED BY HOTEL RWANDA AND HOPFULLY SHOOTINGS DOGS WILL BE MUCH GENUINE AND THOUGHFUL UNLIKE HOTEL RWANDA.LOOKING FORWARD TO WATCH IT TOMMORROW @ RITZY CINEMA BRIXTON.
ERIC

 
At 12:37 AM, Anonymous Ruth said...

I watched the film while away on a catholic retreat. I was so shocked by what I saw. When watching films I can usually say to myself "It's ok it's not real" However in this case that wasn't true.

I was left in pure admiration of those who were used as extras in the film as they actually experienced the genocide and lost members of their families. The strength these people have is amazing.

Congratulations to all those involved in the making of this film - it is an amazing portrayal of such a horrific time.

 
At 2:14 AM, Anonymous Musa Kasonka jr said...

I worked in Rwanda for 5 years. It was during my tour of duty that I was cast in the film.It is humbling to speak on behalf of those one million martyrs.

 
At 2:39 PM, Blogger Ian Dean said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 2:44 PM, Blogger Ian Dean said...

A great movie one that i shall remember for a long time to come, It's
made my mind up to volunteer again but this time in Africa! Thanks to everyone who made this movie possible not only for raising awareness of how fragile humanity really is! But also showing me that one person can make a difference. So that next time we can do more to prevent tragedies such as this. And a Very spacial thanks to all the locals who took part in the movie's making for having the strength to deal with such a horrific subject that they have suffered through! I weep for the loss that i can never understand but also with the joy of being honored with a glimpse of the truth! Thank you

Edited 5 min after posting!

 
At 3:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Totally blew us away- watched it with a group of people with different tastes and we all walked out speechless, not really knowing what to say.
This will make you cry and wonder at the random great misfortune of these people.
If like us, you knew very little about Rwanda before, you will be searching for answers on how this could be true.
Please go watch this film - exhausting and heartbreaking , just amazing

 
At 12:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The film is so fantastic and its a real representation of what exactly took place in the 1994 genocide of Rwanda.I watched from the uncovered pavilion in the cold of Amahoro stadium,but the coldness was outweighed by the representative scenes,which were depicted by the suffering of all kind as the film potrayed.It will be such a good teaching guide for the ages to come, of what Rwandese and the world at large experienced,few decades after the UN`s never again,of the Holocaust.Dr.Paul Namwanja, former head of medical team for the Shooting Dog`s crew.

 
At 12:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The film is so fantastic and its a real representation of what exactly took place in the 1994 genocide of Rwanda.I watched from the uncovered pavilion in the cold of Amahoro stadium,but the coldness was outweighed by the representative scenes,which were depicted by the suffering of all kind as the film potrayed.It will be such a good teaching guide for the ages to come, of what Rwandese and the world at large experienced,few decades after the UN`s never again,of the Holocaust.Dr.Paul Namwanja, former head of medical team for the Shooting Dog`s crew.

 
At 3:36 PM, Blogger jenn said...

This film was absolutely magnificent. I was totally blown away. I am a freshman in high school and we had just finished learning about Rwanda in my World Geography class. I had read all of the statistics, and I knew all of the numbers, but i could never imagine in my wildest dreams what it could have really been like there. This movie gave me a greater understanding of the pain and suffering which occured much too recently, and instilled me with an intense wish to help in any way I can. My friends and I are currently starting a letter crusade at our school to help the people currently suffering in the Darfur region. If you also want to help out, you can go to dollsfordarfur.com to read all about the genocide and ways that you can help. Once again, I just want to say thank you for coming to my town. It is by far the most moving and thought-provoking film I have ever seen. Thank you, I cannot say that enough. Thanks.

 
At 6:19 PM, Blogger KBarrillea said...

Many others have left their impressions of the power this film in its representation of the Rwandan massacre. I thoroughly agree.

I would like to suggest an (hopefully simple) assist on a technical point. There were some concerns at the Lake Charles, LA screening, about the difficulty in understanding the dialogue. If it were possible to reduce the background ambient noise I think it would help, as often the crowd sounds, etc were quite loud.

This is an important film and I would hate to see it less well received than it deserved because of a relatively minor technical difficulty.

I was especially moved and impressed with the portrayal of Father Christopher. It is rare that the Catholic community gets to see such a beautiful characterization of a priest with such courage, conviction and faith. I haven't seen a characer that stuck with me like Father Christopher since Jeremy Irons' portrayal of Father Gabriel in The Mission. The multiple scenes of Catholic mass were faitfully and respectfully done with Rwandan flair as well. As a Catholic I am proud to recommend this film to anyone who will stand still long enough to listen to me.

 
At 8:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seeing "Shooting Dogs" was a moving experience. The movie is very well done, and covers an event that deserves more exposure in the United States. The comments from those attending the showing in Lake Charles have been very positive. This is certainly a movie which should be seen by others in the U.S.

The problem with the sound during the Lake Charles showing was caused by the equipment we were using and not by the movie itself.

Those of us on the Banners Committee (www.banners.org) greatly appreciated David Belton coming to Lake Charles to present "Shooting Dogs" and to answer questions afterwards. David was able to convey to those in attendance not only an insight into what happened in Rwanda, but also into the movie making process.

 
At 6:14 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i didn't really enjoy the movie,
i didn't feel very well afterwards, because you see this film and it's afterwards that you ask yourself, "oh my god, what can we do??" ...nothing because this was in 1994, this was in 1994(!) and I never knew that it was this horrible, you feel the pain of those characters, and sometimes during the film , you even think ," i want to be with them, i want to help them, why do they have to feel all this pain??" it's a very intense movie, because you know that it's no fiction

 
At 12:11 PM, Anonymous Robert Stott (Lake Charles, La) said...

This was a very poignant and moving film. I felt very privileged to be part of the first showing in the U.S. This is a film with all of the impact and importance of Schindler's List. The acting was excellent and the message powerful. This is a must see for any conscientious person; but a warning – you will go out of this movie with a very heavy heart, but a raised consciousness of these atrocities.

While I am very proud to be an American and I treasure the freedoms we enjoy and the strengths of our nation, I am not proud of all the things our nation (i.e. our government) has done throughout history. I hope that lessons were learned from what occurred and is occurring in Rwanda and other Africa nations, as well as other places around the world and that in the future we can strive to do more to prevent such horrible events from taking place, and not just if it’s in the best economic interests.

 
At 9:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shooting Dogs doesn't shy away from any of the atrocities of the Rwandan genocide. Though its depiction of the butchery is graphic at times, it always feels necessary.

Even more chilling, though, is the feeling an American or European gets in watching this butchery knowing all along that just a couple thousand UN soldiers could probably have prevented the bulk of the massacre. The BBC journalist's painful statement to Joe about the different attitude she had in Bosnia strikes like a machete in the back of every westerner who turned a blind eye to the Rwandan genocide. It should strike us in the heart that we're allowing a similar situation to go on in the Sudan even today.

Technically, the film is skillfully done: inclulding the motif of running (Marie's run ties the film together artistically); the irony of the UN and guns (willing to fire on ravaging dogs and the very refugees they've been protecting as the UN escapes to safety but not to shoot at the murderers); and, most of all, John Hurt's portrayal of Father Christopher. Along with the strength, resignation, and dignity of the Rwandans awaiting their certain deaths, the beautiful soulfulness of his character carries the movie.

 
At 10:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ths film has not yet reached Italy. I have heard about it and tried to look for it but failed. Kindly access it to us in Italy for veiwing. It will be a great honour for us even owing to the fact that Italian troops too, under UNAMIR, had to leave rwandans at a time they were needed most. Let the Italians see this film.

 
At 2:18 AM, Anonymous Roger Merenyi said...

If John Hurt doesn’t receive an Oscar for his performance in this stunning film, then I shall consider the entire Oscar award-giving ceremonies a travesty.

 
At 9:45 AM, Anonymous Norberto Silva said...

I watch the film yesterday in Faro, Portugal. Impressive how human beings can be so easily manipulated and so brutal to each other. I wonder if we could ever achieve the so called humanity. Everybody should view this film, the reality sometimes is far worst than most violent fiction...

 
At 3:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is an amazing film, really showing just what the whole country went through in 1994. It doesn't shy away from the brutal violence and doesn't have the happy ending required by american film goers like 'Hotel Rwanda', although that is still a great film.
Makes you wonder about Darfur? will we have the same stories in ten years time from there???

 
At 2:48 AM, Anonymous ~*~ sam ~*~ aged 14 said...

i watched this film as it was recomended by a family member i found it incredably moving and awfully sad it taught me a lot about how lucky i really am and i will never take my countrys ways for grnted agen :)

 
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At 7:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am a white african, unfortunately these traits, i.e. wanting to kill seemingly at random, is not limited to either a race or a place.
i am also a christian - as such - as in this film and in the case of Christ - love always triumphs over death!
ggs

 
At 2:28 AM, Anonymous Simona said...

I found the movie deeply moving, at the end I was so angry, so indignated,..
and I wonder why we have waited so much time to let all the world know what's happened in Rwanda, Burundi, ...without intervene while the genocide was happening!!!!
In these moments It's really so difficult to trust in God!!...

 
At 12:36 PM, Anonymous Liz Gonzalez said...

What a film!!! Every day I wonder whether we can make a difference in our world. Someone lent me the DVD. It took me a while for me to decide whether to buy it.This film was more shocking and made me cry more than even the Holocaust films because I had just started supporting a little girl in Rwanda through a charity and had read it's history. All I wanted to do was fly over to her and hold her in my arms. Also, out gospel choir has just produced a live aid gospel song called Song for Africa for HopeHIV in England. Much of my heart is in Africa. Adding to that I'm a commited Catholic who believes that Christ wins over death. However disgusting and sinful we can be, we've got to remember that every person is a child of God!!

 
At 5:35 PM, Anonymous Darrell Parker said...

Possibly the most moving film i have ever seen to date. I was sickend that the UN pulled out. And now look at UN in a totally different light. I now wonder what a terrible world we actually live in. Why is life so cheap and will we ever learn from this.

 

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