Film review: Robert Mugabe... What happened?
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Robert Mugabe is an enigma to his people, and the rest of the world. The Zimbabwean President who famously declared himself to be the ‘Hitler of Africa’ was once a hero and a role model to his people, and for fifteen years, he was. Simon Bright’s film, Robert Mugabe… What happened? attempts to pin-point the variables that have led Mugabe on the path to the destruction of his name, his politics, and his people, who he once fought so hard to protect. Right from the onset, it is evident that Robert Mugabe… What happened? is the Zimbabwean director’s gift to the people of his country. With the clever use of parallel narratives, he educates his audience about the personal and political journey of President Robert Mugabe. This device gives equal weight to the depiction of Mugabe’s rise and his fall. With the use of first-hand accounts and archived footage, the film takes its audience on a chronological time travel through Mugabe’s existence, from his early childhood; through to the man he is today. By humanising Mugabe, the film goes some way to answering the question Robert Mugabe… What happened? In the media, Mugabe is often portrayed as almost a species of his own. During the latter years of his presidency, he has received heavy criticism from the press.
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