Child Soldiers in Sierra Leone

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Africa in Cinema- Final Paper Professor Rice May 2010 Child Soldiers in Sierra Leone This semester, the topic of Child Soldiers presented a very interesting dilemma that several countries in Africa continue to face today. Sierra Leone, in particular, has struck an interest because of the many films and readings that try to depict this story of the civil war. In class, we have viewed two films representing the problems with child soldiers in Sierra Leone which include films titled Blood Diamond and Ezra. Both films represent opposite sides of the spectrum, as Blood Diamond shows the Western view of child soldiers and Ezra represents the first African view of child soldiers. Before discussing the two films, there are also two…show more content…
Their minds are controlled by the RUF and if they did not comply with the orders of the organization they were immediately killed. This type of life is so unimaginable but still continues as we speak. In Blood Diamond, the western view of this miserable story of Sierra Leone is depicted. Having viewed the film several times I now understand the real reason behind the film. Because it is in a western, Hollywood view, the film can only keep the attention of the viewers if there is some kind of white influence. With that said, even though the story of child soldiers is what is meant to be depicted, the love story between a South African Journalist and an American diamond smuggler is what is represented instead. Instead of focusing on the true matter at hand, Hollywood insists on using the talents of Leonardo Di Caprio to misrepresent the issues over diamonds in Sierra Leone. In the film, it is misleading to see how savage- like the children of Sierra Leone are made out to be. The story almost seemed too good to be true in the film and to anyone who does not know much about the situation in Sierra Leone it may have been a great film. In my opinion it was a very sad excuse for a film and the film in every way used the situation in Sierra Leone as an advantage to the boost of some of Hollywood’s best actors’ careers. The other film viewed in class entitled Ezra depicted the story of child soldiers from an
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