Police officer Dirk Hendricks (Bartlett) files an amnesty application for Alex Mpondo (Ejiofor), a member of the South African Parliament who can't remember the torture he once endured as a captive political activist. South African-born attorney Sarah Barcant (Swank), meanwhile, returns to her homeland to represent Mpondo, as well as Steve Sizela, Mpondo's friend who was arrested along with him ...
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The South African lawyer Sarah Barcant travels from New York back to her hometown to represent the member of the Parliament Alex Mpondo in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission since torturer police officer Dirk Hendricks has made an application for amnesty. The parents of Steve Sizela request Sarah to represent them also since their son that was arrested with Mpondo but has gone missing. Hendricks uses one break in the trial to threaten Mpondo, promising to destroy his political career telling that he was a traitor. But Mpondo, who is a man traumatized with the torture, anticipates and tells what has happened to Steve Sizela and him in the hands of Hendricks and his superior Piet Müller. Will the remains of Steve be found and the truth disclosed?Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The Truth and Reconciliation process in South Africa is a vital and probably unique human experiment. This movie does an excellent job of revealing the complexity of the task and the incredible challenges facing South Africa. I believe every one should see this movie as I think few people outside of South Africa understand its past and what is being attempted in the Truth and Reconciliation process. Almost every country has some part of its own history which is still a source of continuing hatred and bitterness. We all need to understand ways of dealing with the past. What's happening in South Africa should guide us all. I found it credible, moving and at times upsetting. There were no outstanding acting performances but this added to the strength of the narrative. Once again the BBC has been instrumental in taking a complex topic and turning out a top class movie.
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