2005, HBO (TV). Directed by Raoul Peck. Idris Elba, Oris Erhuero, Debra Winger.
Decent Films Ratings
|?Teens & Up*|
Content advisory: Horrific depictions of post-massacre mayhem and disturbing images; graphic but still restrained violence; references to rape; an instance of obscenity.
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Sometimes in April (DVD)
From a National Catholic Register review
By Steven D. Greydanus
Hotel Rwanda is a shrewdly chosen closeup on the Rwandan holocaust of 1994, a portrait of an unassuming hero who turned the Hotel Milles Collins into an oasis of relative safety and bearability in the midst of the hell of genocide and civil war. Sometimes in April, an HBO drama built around the same shattering events, opts for a broader canvas both in time and space, exchanging a strong dramatic center for increased depth of detail and insight.
Compared to the theatrically released Hotel, Sometimes in April is grimmer, less focused, and more uncompromising. Both films focus on a connected, successful Hutu family man with a Tutsi wife and a number of children, but this man’s story, in which the past of 1994 and the present are intercut, is more ambiguous and tragic.
Catholicism is a largely positive presence in Sometimes. One of the film’s most wrenching scenes is in a Catholic boarding school for girls, where the nuns seek vainly to protect their charges from the murderous militias, and the young Hutu students courageously choose solidarity with their Tutsi classmates even though it means martyrdom.
Though the imagery is at times horrific, Sometimes in April still shows restraint, never showing the notorious machetes in use (though there are onscreen shootings).