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Mugabe and the White African

21 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

{SHORTLISTED Academy of Motion Pictures for Best Documentary Oscar 2009}

{WINNER! Best Documentary, British Independent Film Award 2009}

{WINNER! Grand Jury Prize, Silverdocs 2009}

{WINNER! Special Jury Prize, Hamptons International Film Festival 2009}

Short-listed as one of the 15 best documentaries of the year, Mugabe and the White African is the story of one family's astonishing bravery as they fight to protect their property, their livelihood and their country.

Mike Campbell is one of the few white farmers left in Zimbabwe since its leader, Robert Mugabe, enacted his disastrous land redistribution program. Previously the breadbasket of Africa, Zimbabwe has since spiraled into chaos, the economy decimated as farms given to Mugabe cronies are run into ruin. After enduring years of intimidation, threats and, finally, physical violence, Campbell decides to take action. Unable to call upon help from his country's authorities, he challenges Mugabe before an international court.

Review

CRITICS' PICK! Filmed at tremendous risk... Surprisingly VISCERAL and RIVETING! --New York Magazine

ENGROSSING AND ENRAGING! Gripping...Astonishing! --National Public Radio

Eye-opening chronicle… a remarkably vivid portrait of a land and its people. --LA Times


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Michael Campbell, Robert Mugabe, Ben Freeth
  • Directors: Lucy Bailey, Andrew Thompson
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Shona, English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: First Run Features
  • DVD Release Date: December 14, 2010
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00443TULY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,950 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

43 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Morag Roy on January 3, 2011
Format: DVD
I wish that every impotent politician and do gooder who screamed, in their ignorance, 'One Man One Vote' in the 70's could see the devastation wrought by the very man they encouraged into power.

This film displays the dignity and courage of a farming family who dared to stand against the injustice and corruption of a government that has brought a beautiful, prosperous country to its knees. Greed and power has marked Mugabe's reign. He will die soon and behind him is a legacy of destruction, violence and genocide....Yet the world looks on and does nothing.

Mike Campbell and his family dared to take Mugabe on. They refused to hand over their legally owned land to one of Mugabe's henchmen. They went to an international court and won....but at what a price. View this DVD if you have the courage. Then I challenge you to do something worthwhile to bring change in Zimbabwe.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Towson Roadrunner on May 7, 2011
Format: DVD
This was a fantastic movie. Mike Campbell was murdered on April 6, 2011. Watch this movie and be amazed at what is happening in Zimbabwe and is seldom reported. My family and I found this movie to be very well done. The Campbell family is very brave and tried to stay with their farm and family.Hundreds of white farmers have been murdered like Mike. Watch this and be informed. The Economist magazine has a tribute to Mike Campbell in the April 23, 2011 issue. You will not forget this!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on April 30, 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I watched this video the same day that Mike Campbell passed away. It is so sad to see that after all the courage and fortitude that Mugabe still ultimately won. This film is not about Zimbabwe, it is about standing up for what you believe in. If you need some inspiration this is one to watch.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Hzleyes on August 16, 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I agree with the others, this is a great documentary of a man who started out as a liberator and has turned into one of the most despotic, racist and power hungry dictator's in the past 30 years. His criminality and blood thirsty bigotry has devastated what was once not only Africa's breadbasket, but also a major tourist destination. For what purpose-to maintain himself in power. He has abused, killed and menanced his countrymen. While this documentary focuses on the story of a particular white farmer, it also illustrates the heroic courage of many black Zimbabweans who risked their lives in support of the higher ideal of brotherhood and democracy. Hell will be too cool for Mugabe when he get there to rest alongside Stalin, Hitler, Lenin and other bloodthirsty degenerate dictators.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By K. Gordon on September 8, 2011
Format: DVD
While this documentary of a white farmer fighting for his land against the bullying dictator Mugabe
and his `land redistribution' program that mostly redistributed land only to his cronies is certainly
a stirring, fascinating battle, there is also something a little simplistic in it's attitudes. Almost
something a little colonial.

No one can defend Mugabe and his treatment of his own country, but the film acts as if there's
no reason for lingering resentment of white, upper-class property holders after centuries of white
domination. Even the lead character talks to and about his black workers in a sort of condescending
`see how well I treat them?' sort of way.

I don't pretend to be any sort of expert on the situation in Zimbabwe (there are some fascinating
back and forth arguments in some of the reviews here, and - in more detail - under 'comments'.)
I just know I can't help feeling things are not so simplistic when the white ex-South African owner
of a huge farm talks about the blacks he works with as if they were children or less than his
equal.

Again, I am in no way defending Mugabe. I know enough to see that he is clearly a
ruthless, horrendous dictator, who has done great harm to blacks and white alike. I'm
saying there is another, more subtle issue in this particular story that gets short shrift, making
it feel a bit more like a polemic, and a bit less like an objective view than I wished. I don't
know enough about Zimbabwe, but neither does most of the world. Just a few minutes of
history to deal with the context both the country's history and the farmer's, might have made
me either trust the films' arguments more deeply, or question them more thoroughly.
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Yoda on June 8, 2011
Format: DVD
The documentary follows a family of white farmers who, having legally purchased and utilized their farmland for over 20 years, are under threat of expropriation by the Mugabe regime. The documentary follows the family's optimistic and idealistic legal challenge to Mugabe which, inevitably, fails. Considering the state of the judiciary in Zimbabwe this is no surprise. Eventually the family is beaten and nearly killed and does lose its farm. It loses it under the guise of land "redistribution" which, in reality, is anything but. The so called "redistribution" consists, in reality, not of taking land from white farmers and giving it to the "poor" or "landless" but to Mugabe's cronies and the "connected" who then go about stripping the farms, running them into the ground and making them totally unproductive. Hence not only do the white farmers lose their land but the black farm hands also lose their jobs and Zimbabwe, a predominately agragrian based economy, loses tax income and agricultural production. As a result of these seizures Zimbabwe has gone from being a large agricultural exporter to a large net importer of agricultural products. No mind, however, as Mugabe's friends , family and supporters end up lining their pockets as a result.

One of the remarkable aspects of the film is its footage of Mugabe's cronies that clearly show their explicit racial policies of ethnic cleansing of the european segment of the population. During one espcially illustrative clip, the son of one of Mugabe's ministers, an individual whose hand's the family's farmland falls into, goes on a tirade blaming the european races for "theft" and "running the economy into the ground" and then goes on to call, quite literally and explicitely, for the expulsion of all those of european decent from Zimababwe.
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