Solomon Vandy In Blood Diamond

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This paper will discuss one aspect of the movie 'Blood Diamond.' Upon release, the film was largely celebrated according to the belief that it had presented a realistic portrayal of the diamond trade in Sub Saharan Africa and that it had given a moving and powerful description of the damage which this trade does to the lives of the people involved in it, and to those who find themselves caught up against their will. However, this paper will argue that the film continues to play into identifiably racist stereotypes and that it manifests a form of fundamentally false reconciliation. In order to demonstrate this this thesis, the paper will focus on the character of Solomon Vandy, portrayed in the film by Djimon Hounsou. It will show how the character's conventional character in the movie belies the films claims to present a radical and progressive message. It will do this by first of all considering the work of Frank Wilderson as it relates to depictions of African American people on screen and will then use this work to illustrate that the narrative of Solomon is…show more content…
Archer's journey in the film sees him overcoming his own cynical nature in order to reconcile himself with ideals of virtue and courage which he was shown as manifestly lacking, but to which he had an inalienable right as a white person, and this narrative is predicated on the Solomons's own. However, whereas Archer's is believable, Solomon's manifests and inherent contradiction. The latter's narrative involves him becoming steadily integrated into a society which by definition excludes him, in doing so he manifests the traits of a good, liberal citizen which is stands in contrast for the majority of the film to Archer. It through this contrast that Solomon can be seen as a condition of possibility for the pathos laden moment in movie's climax when Archer dies of a gun shot wound, but, while doing so, apparently reconciles himself to democratic ideals of truth and
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