Finally watched Blood Diamond this weekend. It was good actually, kind of an adventure flick but with an attempt to show some of the reality of the blood diamond trade. Of course, along side the brutal killing, child soldiers and arm chopping, Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Connelly added some standard holywood magic to the whole affair; three stylists between then, made sure that hair was never out-of-place. The black African lead managed to achieve his apotheosis in the end by wearing a suit and talking to Americans (who could ask for more?). And, of course, there was a dramatic love interest to set it off. Still, it wasn’t anywhere as bad as it could have been. It did help to raise child soldiers up the agenda, it did describe how the diamond market works (or worked as it’s all different now, honest) and it was actually quite interesting. Critically important, there was no warbling in the background from Celine Dion which is guarenteed to improve any movie.

All in stark contrast to Carla’s Song which I also saw; a simple, elegant and well-told story and some excellent performances. One of Ken Loach’s more cheerful films with Robert Carlyle in his golden period, I greatly enjoyed it. If Ken Loach really wanted to change the world, he’s spice his films up a bit, like Blood Diamond, to sell to the US market, get the message in under-the-wire. I’m glad he doesn’t.

Posted by hand from my old blog site.