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Lumumba ★★★½ 2001

Powerful biopic of Patrice Lumumba, the first elected Prime Minister of the Congo, who was assassinated mere months after the country gained its independence from Belgium. Directorwriter Peck, who also filmed the documentary “Lumumba—Death of a Prophet” uses flashbacks to show Lumumba's ascent from beer salesman to prominence in the independence movement and his eventual rise to, and violent removal from power. Peck neccesarily omits some details of Lumumba's early life, but in the process glosses over his ealy work in the Congolese National Movement. French actor Ebouanay gives a masterful performance, finding the humanity behind the icon. Filmed in Zimbabwe and Mozambique because the Congo was suffering through yet another civil war. 115m/C VHS, DVD . FR BE GE Eriq Ebouaney, Alex Descas, Theophile Moussa Sowie, Maka Kotto, Dieudonne Kabongo, Pascal Nzonzi, Mariam Kaba; D: Raoul Peck; W: Raoul Peck, Pascal Bonitzer; C: Bernard Lutic; M: Jean-Claude Petit.