The Agronomist Reviews
So having gotten the "I wasn't really paying attention" disclaimer out of the way, I'll proceed to review the movie. It's a documentary about a Haitian political activist named Jean Dominique who was assassinated in 2000. Dominique founded an independent radio station in 1968 which broadcast in the peasant language of Creole and repeatedly incurred the wrath of the government.
Before seeing this film, I knew almost nothing about Haiti. After seeing it, I still know almost nothing about Haiti. I think that's part of the problem. The film seems to presuppose a basic knowledge of the subject, which I don't have.
To me, the movie was a whirlwind of facts about dictators and coups and exiles, interspersed with interviews with the very animated Dominique and his wife, Michele Montas. Dominique's passion was evident, as was his popularity with the masses. The most moving footage in the film captures a crowd of about 60,000 who spontaneously gathered at the airport for his first return from exile in 1986.
I'm going to give this film the benefit of the doubt and assume I'd have found it more engrossing if I was more into it from the beginning. In any case, it has a good soundtrack.
Demme did a good job and made the most of the interviews, however he relies too much in the spoken word, and at some points it gets a bit tedious, too much information. I just wish he would display action more prominently to make it more palatable
An essential watch for anybody that wants to find out about the recent history of Haiti