Patience for ‘Blood Diamond’ and ‘Children of Men’ pays off

Bridget Nordquist

Bridget Nordquist

As I have often complained about in this very column, some of the best movies released are rather difficult to see in our area. Many critically acclaimed films may not stay in our local theatres for long, if they appear at all. Hopefully, you are patient enough to wait for worthwhile films to come out on DVD. Recently, several good movies been released on DVD, including the must-see films “Blood Diamond” and “Children of Men.”

“Blood Diamond” is a violently poignant film that explores the timely issue of conflict diamonds in Africa. The movie was nominated for several Academy Awards including for actors Leonard DiCaprio and Djimon Hounsou (also seen in “Gladiator”). DiCaprio plays a diamond smuggler who originally appears to be concerned with no one and nothing other than reaping the benefits from the war-torn continent. Hounsou is a simple peasant who is torn from his family and forced to work in the dangerous diamond mines. DiCaprio and Hounsou eventually pair up to hunt for a huge diamond that will lead them both to their goals. Jennifer Connelly also stars in “Blood Diamond” as an American journalist who strives to raise awareness of Africa’s desperate situation through her literary talents.

This film is not only pertinent to the times we live in, but it is also emotionally compelling. The performances by all the actors are very good, even if Leo’s South African accent is slightly questionable. “Blood Diamond” is very violent, but only rightly so. Overall, this movie is forceful and a worthwhile picture for lovers of hard-hitting films.

In the same vein, “Children of Men” is also a fabulously thought-provoking movie. The film explores futuristic England in the year 2027. The world’s population faces imminent extinction because the human race has lost the ability to procreate. “Children of Men” stars the always entertaining Clive Owen as the protector of a young woman who is mysteriously pregnant. This woman and her baby become the hope of humankind even as they flee from conniving radicals.

“Children of Men” was directed by Alfonso Cuar