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Amin: The Rise and Fall (1981)

Rise and Fall of Idi Amin (original title)
The chronicle of Ugandan dictator Idi Amin and his tyranic rule from 1971 to his overthrow in 1979.


Sharad Patel


Wade Huie


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Joseph Olita Joseph Olita ... Idi Amin
Thomas Baptiste ... Dr. Michael Oloya
Leonard Trolley Leonard Trolley ... Bob Astles
Geoffrey Keen ... British Ambassador
Louis Mahoney ... Freedom fighter Ofumbi
André Maranne André Maranne ... French Ambassador
Denis Hills Denis Hills ... Himself
Tony Sibbald ... Canadian Ambassador Davis
Norbert Okare Norbert Okare ... Kiwanuka
Ka Vundla Ka Vundla ... Malyamungu
Martin Okello Martin Okello ... Amin Officer
Nicky Giles Nicky Giles ... White Girl
Ann Wanjuga Ann Wanjuga ... Mrs. Olaya
Gordon Gardner Gordon Gardner ... Israeli Ambassador
Alf Joint ... American Ambassador


This biographical movie begins with a short blurb about Uganda, followed by the joyous scenes surrounding Amin's military takeover from Milton Obote. He goes about arresting and torturing the rebels. In his freezer he keeps the heads of his rivals and says: "It is a Kaqwa way. I talk to them". Amin then goes about having Asians expelled from Uganda saying: "Uganda is for Ugandas. There will be no more Shahs and Patels. Let them swim back." After the infamous 1976 Entebbe hostage situation where Israeli commandos make a daring rescue of their citizens who were taken into Uganda on a hijacked plane, Amin has Dora Bloch (the only hostage the Israelis couldn't liberate) killed. Amin then goes on to believing he is the 'Hitler of Africa' and promises that he will actually erect a statue in honour of his namesake "in the middle of Kampala". Amin becomes a rather childish and sick psychopath who mixes voodoo, rape, torture, and dancing. He says things like: "I am the best lover of Africa", "... Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He rose by terror. He ruled by fear. He wrote history with the blood of his people. See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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UK | Nigeria | Kenya



Release Date:

May 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Amin: The Rise and Fall See more »

Filming Locations:

Kenya See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?


In an episode of Film 2006, broadcast in the UK on 30th October 2006, Jonathan Ross claimed that he had appeared as an extra in this film 1981 movie as an Israeli soldier raiding Entebbe airport. See more »


Idi Amin: Give him, and all of them V.I.P treatment!
See more »


Referenced in Das geheime Kino (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

Worth watching
31 January 2007 | by gormansterSee all my reviews

I watched this film a while ago now, and to me it plays more like an 80's action film than a genuine historical account of what went on during Amin's reign in Uganda. It's the way the film was paced, that leads a viewer to this impression. The film focuses only on Amin's reign in Uganda and not his early life, or how he came to be one of the worst dictators in history.

However, I will say this, Joseph Olita, the actor who is playing Amin is very, very believable as the dictator. He steals every scene he is in, because of his remarkable physical resemblance to Amin. The scene where he orders the group of school children to observe the aftermath of the execution of one of his wives is a prime example of the genuine air of menace than Olita manages to convey.

The film also captures much of the madness that was Amin. Whether he is awarding his young son Uganda's highest military Honor's, or consulting a witch doctor to determine who is plotting against him and then ordering the massacre of several tribes based on such advice is hard to fathom happening in the real world; but of course all available evidence said it did.

So in summary, I guess this film is best enjoyed as an account of some of the horrors that took place in Uganda during Amin's reign. It doesn't provide any real insight in Amin, but that's not necessary a bad thing. Any insights into why Amin did what he did must be inferred because of the craziness of this man, and this film does a fairly good job of capturing some of that craziness.

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