Invictus - a great movie
A couple of nights ago we watched Invictus on DVD and thoroughly enjoyed it.
It tells the story of Nelson Mandela becoming President after his long imprisonment and the battles he fought to bring his apartheid torn nation together. It especially focuses on the 1995 Rugby World Cup and President Mandela's plan to use the popular 'white' sport to unite the racially challenged nation behind their poorly performing team.
The lead roles are played by Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon, both of whom resemble the real life characters they play, and then work very hard to portray them accurately. They do an excellent job, especially Morgan as President Mandela.
This movie gives you a real feel for the traumatic changes South Africa went through in the nineties, but it also demonstrates the powerful role sport can play in such times. This was a great movie, with drama, humour and accuracy, so you soon find yourself rooting for the Springboks to take the cup.
I remember this World Cup really well and the filmakers really capture the actual raw excitement and yearning desire for South Africa to do well on their home soil. Like most people my age or older, I also clearly remember the day Nelson Mandela was released and watching his climb to power and success with great interest and hope. So I ultimately found this film emotionally connected with me, which always makes a movie mean more to a viewer.
It really brought home to me how much the USA misses out on not competing against the rest of the world in soccer/football and rugby. There's nothing quite like a whole nation coming to a standstill whilst the citizens get behind them and then celebrate their team. The street scenes at the end of this movie really took me back to similar times in England when we have enjoyed success. If like the USA you never experience it (because the Olympics just aren't the same) then you don't know what you're missing out on, and it's one helluva of a world party!
Invictus is an uplifting movie based in fact, that we highly recommend.