Review Of Sarafina

1018 words - 5 pages

In June 16th 1976 South African students from Soweto marched in the streets, protesting their educational system, an action which cost the lives of hundreds and flamed the fires of revolution. The movie Sarafina follows the internal and external struggles of a young student in times of poverty, turmoil, and violence, and shows the dichotomy between the choices and situations that Sarafina must choose between to combat the oppressive government.The film starts with a moving sequence showing a group of young African students burning down their own school. Throughout most of the film, Sarafina is torn between two extremes, and this is the first example. The students are upset at the white ...view middle of the document...

When questioned about the gun, Mary explained it was her husband's, saying: "I hate the killing, I hate the violence, but I can't stand to let others die for me. I will fight, but just don't ask me to kill. I could never kill." Once again Sarafina was presented with conflicting views; torn between the different ways of fighting oppression, and not knowing which way was right.In the face of direct challenges about her teaching unapproved material, Mary Masombuka did not back down and eventually was arrested and taken from school. This sparked a riot, and the guards murdered several of the students. This was the beginning of very violent times in Soweto. A group of African students tried to start a boycott of white owned stores in the area, but met resistance from their own people, and then the authorities. Even some of their own people did not want to cause trouble, and this conflict was another representation of the two sides of dealing with the apartheid. Some favored direct action and others wanted change to come about without any large protests of that nature.The students protested the guards in the schools, and the recent tragedy, only to have the guards open fire on them again. The street massacre led to more riots and general anarchy. Things got out of hand, and culminated with Sarafina passively participated in the killing of a local police man. The man was beaten and then burned to death, and although Sarafina did not actively participate, she did nothing to stop the mob. She said she hated him and wanted him to die, but when she looked into his eyes she was unsure and saddened. In the midst of turmoil and violence, Sarafina is torn between...

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