Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Mandela Review - 3 Stars

“Mandela” comes at the proper time — just as the world celebrates the life of the former President of South Africa.    Idris Elba — whom I think ranks among the greatest of the actors working today — does a fine and respectable job of replicating Mandela’s voice and presence.  The highlights of his life touch on childhood, growing up years, his young adult life, romance and marriage and finally his radicalization in the face of the terrible racism and discrimination of the time.  The film concludes with the steps leading to change in society that bring about his election as Presidency.   Some will argue that what he did once in office defined him as a great leader, but you won’t see that in this respectful biography.  But you will get a sense of why the world respects Mandela and how far he came in bringing about great social change.  Does it deliver what it promises?  Straight forward biography of Nelson Mandela.  Is it entertaining?  Plays it straight with a strong performance by Idris Elba.  Is it worth the price of admission?  Inspiration for the season.