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Mandella: Long Walk to Freedom – Director, Justin Chadwick

September 8, 2013

I am a huge fan of Idris Elba for his spectacular roles as the drug dealing Stringer Bell in The Wire and as the London detective Luther. He goes it one better here in his portrayal of Nelson Mandella in this film based on Mandella’s autobiography. It is an epic in the real sense of the word and despite being two and a half hours long and holding your attention for the entire time, it still is only a glimpse into a fantastically complex story and an amazing human being. We are looking here at another Oscar nominee for Best Actor and Best Picture without a doubt. The story is told in a most compelling manner and Elba is brilliant as he ages from a man in his 30’s at the start of the film until he is in his 70’s and winning the first fully free election in South Africa’s history. At the end I had learned much but was left wanting to know more about the conflict he stopped, about de Klerk the white president who opened the door that let Mandella step up, about Winnie Mandella and her very opposite approach to the struggle of her people and about the people themselves. So rich is this film that it leaves you satiated but somehow still wanting much more. Can’t say too much more about this – make sure you take time to see this movie.

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