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The Agronomist (2003)

7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 771 users   Metascore: 82/100
Reviews: 15 user | 45 critic | 29 from Metacritic.com

The true story of Jean Dominique, a Haitian radio journalist and human rights activist.

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Cast

Credited cast:
Jean Dominique ...
Himself
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Aboudja ...
Himself
...
Himself (archive footage)
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Storyline

A profile of Haitian radio journalist and human rights activist, Jean Dominique. It includes: historical footage of Haiti's vivid and tumultuous past; interviews with Dominique, himself and with Michele Montas--his heroic wife, life-long love, and extraordinary partner; and incorporates footage shot before Dominique's assassination on April 3, 2000. Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violent images and brief nudity | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 March 2004 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Jean Dominique, the Agronomist  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$30,855 (USA) (23 April 2004)

Gross:

$226,189 (USA) (25 June 2004)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Jean Dominique: But in 1980, Carter was losing ground. Mr. Ronald...
[smiles]
Jean Dominique: you know him?... was winning ground. And they...
[makes a couple long sniffing sounds]
Jean Dominique: ... smelled it. They said: "The time has come, human rights no more. The Cowboy are back in the white house." And you know the Macoute were fascinated by the cowboy. It was the end of the "Haitian Spring".
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Connections

References La Strada (1954) See more »

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User Reviews

 
inspiring story of an inspirational man
19 June 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Jonathan Demme's "The Agronomist" is a documentary about Jean Dominique, the Haitian civil rights leader and radio journalist who was gunned down by unknown assassins on April 3, 2000. A passionate believer in a free and open press, Dominique founded Radio Haiti in the early 1960's and became know as the "voice of the people" for over four decades of that nation's turbulent, strife-torn history. Through a succession of coups and counter-coups that seemed to forever rock the country, Dominique remained committed to securing freedom for the citizens of his beloved island nation, even if that meant having to do so as a frequent political exile living in the United States. That his own life ended tragically - as is so often the case when brave individuals step out to try to make the world a better place - is of less importance than that people of goodwill pick up the banner and carry forth his message of social justice and equality for all people. Demme has done just that by putting together this inspiring and thought provoking documentary.

In constructing his film, Demme has chosen to rely primarily on the many interviews Dominique gave over the course of his lifetime. Thus, even though Dominique is dead, we are able to hear his story in his own words, a distinct advantage for those of us who knew little or nothing about the man and what he accomplished prior to our seeing this movie. We learn firsthand of all the dreams and fears, hopes and disappointments that came to define this one individual who truly made a difference in his world. In addition to these interviews, Demme also provides insights from Dominique's supportive wife and family as well as from some of the common folk in Haiti who were inspired by Dominique's vision.

As the movie unfolds, Demme provides us with a well-delineated history of Haiti in the last half century, showing us the political turmoil and human suffering that have, sadly, come to define life in that benighted country. This includes the installation and overthrow of both Duvalier regimes ("Papa Doc" and "Baby Doc"), the election then overthrow of Aristide by the forces of Cedras, then the return to power of Aristide at the hands of an international force led by the United States. The saddest part of the movie comes near the end with the realization that, even with a democratically elected government in place, life has not become appreciably better for the average Haitian, for the violence, suppression and government corruption seem as intense today as at any time in Haiti's past.

Still, despite these many setbacks, Dominique's vision of a world where every person is free to speak his mind without fear continues to flourish in the hearts of men and women everywhere. This film is a tribute to that spirit.


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