The Constant Gardener

Last week end, I went to see the movie titled "The Constant Gardener" and I want to highly recommend this feature to everyone. I will not talk about the story in details but to introduce the rest of my blog, I am forced to mention that the movie is about poor neighborhoods of Nigeria, where local citizens are used as guinea pigs by British pharmaceutical companies for their new medication human trials. Now as I was leaving silently the theater, among weeping women and embarrassed men that were starting to think that upgrading their mercedes might not be that urgent after all, I came to question myself... what a great english movie. right, the main actors, the theme, the companies, all British and then it came to me so violently : Why do Hollywood never produce such movies ? Such movies can raise awareness of the common people so far more than books, tv adds or such. Why is it acceptable that Hollywood make such great movie on the Holocaust but nothing of the troubling subjects of our time. But of course, you will tell me that indeed some innovative movies come out from US studios that do tackle various difficult society issues, I have to question why those movies stay as innovative or distributed by sub channels (like Fox searchlight and others). Why don't they use their most famous actors, their best directors to once in a while do an expensive movie that carry more humanity than the Wedding Crashers (nothing personal, I am sure it's funny). As America discover that we have left the poor behind in the south to face the consequences of Katrina, we do not like to see what we see on CNN. As we discover that our backyard is not that safe, we need to all raise from our couches and start thinking that maybe living in a world of permanent brainless entertainment is transforming us into ignorants of the real matters of our planet. One of the thing I really love at my work, at Sun, is the permanent questions we live in while working. Why, Why not ? Why doing things this way, why not doing things differently... Right, I wished I could extrapolate those practices in my everyday life to continue question myself on the path our society is taking us. I do it today, but will I do it tomorrow, and what is depressing, I feel alone doing it...
Comments:

I agree with your post. I now mostly attend movies at an independent theater in my hometown Springfield, Missouri. Their movies are much more thought provoking than anything I have seen in the mainstream lately. You aren't alone my friend. :)

Posted by Gabe McMillan on January 25, 2006 at 02:52 AM PST #

I completely agree. With the awarding of an Oscar to the movie "Crash" this year (great movie!) and George Clooney's comments about being "out of touch", hopefully we are beginning to move in the right direction of creating more thought-provoking movies. You are not alone my friend! :)

Posted by Konrad on March 13, 2006 at 04:03 PM PST #

The movie is set in Kenya!!! Not Nigeria. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Constant_Gardener_(film) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0387131/plotsummary

Posted by Chris on May 02, 2007 at 10:08 AM PDT #

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