7.6/10
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3 user 5 critic

Stones in the Sun (2012)

In the midst of increasing political violence, a young couple, two sisters, and a father and son are driven from Haiti to New York, where they must confront the truths of their interlocked pasts.

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Yannick
Michele Marcelin ...
Micheline
Diana Masi ...
Rebecca
Thierry Saintine ...
Gerald
...
Max
Atibon
Patricia Rhinvil ...
Vita
James Noel ...
Ronald
...
Kelly
Carl Low ...
Cop
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In the midst of increasing political violence, a young couple, two sisters, and a father and son are driven from Haiti to New York, where they must confront the truths of their interlocked pasts.

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21 November 2014 (USA)  »

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Ayiti, Ayiti  »

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Winner - best diaspora film, African Academy film Awards, 2013. See more »

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Impact of Duvalier reign of terror on ex-pats in Brooklyn, NY
22 November 2014 | by (NYC and Keyport, NJ) – See all my reviews

STONES IN THE SUN directed by Haitian filmmaker Patricia Benoit focusing on the struggling lives of Haitian immigrants in Brooklyn, NY who had fled the torture and repressive reigns of Papa Doc Duvalier and Baby Doc Duvalier, his generals and the Tontons Macoutes/death squads in the 1980's.

"Duvalier authorized the Tontons Macoutes to commit systematic violence and human rights abuses to suppress political opposition. They were responsible for unknown numbers of murders and rapes in Haiti. He included among his opponents those who proposed progressive social systems. Political opponents often disappeared overnight, or were sometimes attacked in broad daylight. Tontons Macoutes stoned and burned people alive. Many times they put the corpses of their victims on display, often hung in trees for everyone to see and take as warnings against opposition…" (Wikipedia.)

STONES IN THE SUN makes clear that we can leave our land but the land remains steadfast in our hearts; memories are seared into the ex-patriates' consciousness; the scars and beauty of the homeland weaves them to their past forever.

Benoit concentrates on 3 families to give a fuller dimension to the diaspora. I was particularly moved by a married couple, achingly played by Patricia Rhinvil as the wife Vita and her husband Ronald (James Noel,) a cabdriver who was forced to flee for demonstrating in Haiti, leaving his wife behind at the mercy of men in the dark who commit bestiality upon women's flesh. The history of sexual brutality is wreaked upon Vita's slight frame. She arrives at the Airport, shyly observing her husband with sideways looks - fear, love and apprehension flicker across her face; beautifully acted; words are superfluous. Glimpses of a more care- free time are cut into the frames - what might have been - and what was, and what is.

Haitian proverb: "Stones in the water don't know the suffering of stones in the sun."


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