Film Review: The Last King of Scotland

26 Jan

Plot: A Scottish doctor on a Ugandan medical mission becomes irreversibly entangled with one of the world’s most barbaric figures: Idi Amin. Impressed by Dr. Garrigan’s (James McAvoy) brazen attitude in a moment of crisis, the newly self-appointed Ugandan President Amin (Forest Whitaker) hand picks him as his personal physician and closest confidante. Though Garrigan is at first flattered and fascinated by his new position, he soon awakens to Amin’s savagery–and his own complicity in it. Horror and betrayal ensue as Garrigan tries to right his wrongs and escape Uganda alive.

It was merely out of curiousity for Forest Whitaker’s portrayal of Idi Amin and the numerous accolades he has received so far for that performance that made me interested to see this film. I was really drawn to his charismatic portrayal of Amin and as you see him showing his true colors as the film progressed, all that warm feeling also start to go away and what you are left with is anger towards the man for his sins- he is responsible for the deaths of about 300,000 Ugandans during his oppressive regime. I will direct you now to Filmstalker if you prefer a full comprehensive review of the film.

I guess my only gripe is that James McAvoy’s superb performance as Dr. Nicholas Garrigan has been overlooked because he was just as brilliant as Whitaker. Here you’ll see the transformation of a young doctor who believed he can make a change, almost made it happen, but it just all seemed too good to be true, and all you’re left with is a crushed, heartbroken spirit who just wanted to hang on to dear life. His performance was moving in all levels and I believe he deserved a supporting nomination to say the very least.

The Last King of Scotland: 4/5

2 Responses to “Film Review: The Last King of Scotland”

  1. Peter January 31, 2007 at 10:38 pm #

    A Spanish cinema magazine agrees with you. It seems you are akin to spanish sensibility 😀

  2. Simone January 31, 2007 at 10:40 pm #

    Which part, re: James McAvoy?

    I am 1/4 Spanish remember? 😀

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