Books

Hotel Rwanda

Last night Holly and I watched Hotel Rwanda, a powerful and emotional film about a hotel manager in Rwanda, during the atrocities of 1994. The story is about Paul Rusesabagina (Don Cheadle), who manages the four-star Hôtel des Mille Collines, in Kigali, Rwanda. The hotel is owned by a Belgian company and is something of an oasis for Europeans, Americans, and wealthy Africans. In the spring of 1994, the Hutus massacred the Tutsis, and Rusesabagina (a Hutu married to a Tutsi), desperately attempts to save his family and 1200 Tutsi refugees housed in the hotel, as the rest of the world turns a deaf ear and blind eye to the cries genocide of nearly a million people.

The sheer terror felt by the Tutsi people in the face of such barbaric hatred and cruelty, the betrayal and inhumanity of the West in ignoring the entire situation with political double-speak, the courage and fortitude of Paul Rusesabagina amidst such hopelessness and death - are all vividly portrayed. One walks away from a film like this in shock and disbelief, utterly convinced that human beings are totally depraved - and, that in the grace of God, some people are capable of incredible depths of compassion, courage, and love. See the film - you'll be glad you did. (Caveat: this film includes some heavy violence and strong language. It is not a film for children.)

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