So, I’ve seen a lot of African movies that were critically acclaimed. Cry Freedom, Tsotsi, The last king of Scotland. Speaking of the latter. Forest Whitaker did an amazing role as Idi Amin and won the academy award but the movie as a whole was ok. Still, Forest was a supporting role to a white actor James McAvoy. So great nomination for the acting. So Beast of no Nation is somewhat of a similar story line to Blood diamonds with Djimon Hounsou working with DiCaprio. These two stories were very similar with telling about the conflicts and the wars in Africa. Child slaves and child soldiers are the core of these two stories.
So Beast of no nation.
Beasts of No Nation is a 2015 American war drama film written, shot, and directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga, about a young boy who survives as his country goes through a horrific war. Agu is in fear of his commandant, and adult leaders but his young mind is torn between revulsion and fascination of what is happening around him. Shot in Ghana and starring Idris Elba, Ama K. Abebrese, Abraham Attah, Grace Nortey, David Dontoh, and Opeyemi Fagbohungbe, the film is based on the 2005 novel of the same name by Uzodinma Iweala.
This experience was disturbing and fascinating as well. Seen through the eyes of a child (amazing acting as well), you feel his pain and confusion dealing with the reality of war. Who is right and who is wrong. He gets into the numbing process of drugs to distort the atrocities he experiences along the way. His journey is amazing and you experience it with him.
Now Idris Elba plays the charismatic and ruthless commander of this small army. You are totally engaged by his leadership, ability to convince these men and children of their invincibility and being part of this movement. But he also shows you the side of him that is a child molester, war criminal and a power hungry ego manic. Idris does such an amazing job that I do understand why people were outraged by his lack of nomination. If he were nominated for the Oscar. His only competition would be DiCaprio. Also the movie should have been nominated as well. Very uncomfortable movie to experience but a good movie all around