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Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom Essay

1264 words - 5 pages

Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom follows the story of Nelson Mandela, portrayed by Idris Elba, and the members of the African National Congress (A.N.C.) as they fight the injustice against the Black citizens during the apartheid period in South Africa. Throughout the movie, the viewer is led through the many adversities Mandela has to combat in order to eventually become South Africa’s first Black president. From his 2 divorces to his 27 years in prison, Mandela’s rise to fame and freedom is heartwarming.
The film itself is based off of Nelson Mandela’s autobiography that is entitled with the same name. Because of this the movie was historically accurate in its portrayal. At the beginning of the movie, Mandela’s first wife leaves him because he is never around to help raise their children. Not long after the separation, Mandela finds and marries his second wife, Winnie Madikizela. Almost 6 years into their marriage, Mandela begins his 27 years in imprisonment at Robben Island. Mandela’s correspondence with his family is severed as some of the letters he receives have had words and phrases cut out. Back at home, Winnie is left to raise 2 daughters on her own; however, despite the sudden load of responsibility, Winnie continues to work as an activist against apartheid. Her actions land her in jail where she was put into solitary confinement and tortured for a year. All the while Mandela is being moved around from prison to prison. Mandela and Winnie are together up until the very end of the movie where they divorce. The movie’s explanation for the divorce actually differs from reality. In the movie, the couple splits due to Winnie’s extreme political movements and because their 27 years long separation molded them into people with conflicting viewpoints. In real life, the couple split mainly because of Winnie’s infidelity.
Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom comes from the perspective of Nelson Mandela (from whom the movie derives its title) and the Black citizens of South Africa who suffered through apartheid. The prejudice law and its enforcers act as the “villains”; however, when it comes down to determining the “heroes”, a strange plot twist occurs. Nelson Mandela- who the audience would expect to be the hero- doesn’t first come across as the expected “holy man” who believes that violence is not the way. In fact, Mandela did not adopt his peaceful ways until towards the end of the movie. Mandela’s ordinarily human qualities make his role in the abolishment of apartheid all the more impressive and inspiring. Overall, the constant butting-of-heads that occurs between the so-called “heroes” and “villains” represents the injustice that occurred during the apartheid period. The film obviously appeals to more political and military views than anything else. Mandela starts out the movie as a lawyer albeit an unsuccessful one. His failure is due to the injustice in that occurs in the courtroom. Although promised a fair trial, the Black citizens are presumed...

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