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WINNIE MANDELA

WINNIE MANDELA

Jennifer Hudson is superb as “Winnie Mandikizela-Mandela” (1936-) the sixth daughter of a teacher and  second wife of Nelson Mandela (1918-); her feistiness as a youngster and intellectual alacrity wins her a scholarship and enlightenment in Johannesburg; she is courted and returns the affections of revolutionary, anti-apartheid/lawyer Nelson Mandela (Terrence Howard’s  interpretation is infused with frustration and the agony of stymied, impotent incarceration ); their marriage is ripped asunder; Winnie accepts the role of crusader and herein lies the crux of the film.

Winnie Mandela with a plethora of flaws, is still an outstanding, compelling woman; she led the fight her husband fathered; she refused to break after 500 days in prison, primarily in solitary confinement; she earned the title “mother of the nation”; as her power multiplied, so did her myopia; she fostered “necklacing”, placing tires around  police informants necks and igniting them; it was her protective “football bodyguards” that led to her demise and subsequent divorce from Mandela; the horrific death of thirteen-year-old,  James “Stompie” Seipei was the nadir of her existence and Hudson renders her loss of integrity with a powerful, depthful poignancy.

The Mandelas’ nemesis, prime persecutor, police Colonel de Fries (wickedly wonderful performance by Elias Koteas) represents the evil and archaic rules of apartheid; his influence dissipates as the ANC’s  (African National Congress) exponentially blossoms .

Often manipulative; emotionally-charged button pushing, sensational; but worthy of watching as a young, idealistic village girl morphs into a force that righted a heinous, immoral injustice, blighting South Africa for forty-six years (1948-1994); her place in history is yet to be determined, but as a fiercely outspoken, iconoclastic figure, intricately involved in the destruction of apartheid; her canonization might trump her disgrace.

THREE STARS!!!

For Now………..Peneflix

Jennifer Hudson is superb as “Winnie Mandikizela-Mandela” (1936-) the sixth daughter of a teacher and  second wife of Nelson Mandela (1918-); her feistiness as a youngster and intellectual alacrity wins her a scholarship and enlightenment in Johannesburg; she is courted and returns the affections of revolutionary, anti-apartheid/lawyer Nelson Mandela (Terrence Howard’s  interpretation is infused with …

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