Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Birmingham has personally endorsed a BBC film about the 1994 Rwandan genocide. Shooting Dogs, directed by Michael Cateon-Jones, stars John Hurt as a Catholic priest and Hugh Dancy as a young teacher caught up in the tragedy.
The world premier of the movie was held at stadium in Kigali, Rwanda, on Monday, in front of an audience of 1,500 people.
After watching the film Archbishop Vincent Nichols wrote a letter to the BBC praising the film.
He said: "Thank you very much indeed for sending me a review copy of the BBC film Shooting Dogs.
"I would like to express my appreciation of the film and to say how very moving I found it. It has clearly been made with great sensitivity, indeed affection, for all those caught up in the tragedy at the Ecole Technique Officielle. The film portrays the dilemmas faced by many people with perceptiveness and respect.
"I was particularly appreciative of the fact that if anything the film understates not only the horrendous nature of what occurred, but also the human dilemmas. In this it leaves space for the viewer's own imagination and reflection.
"I was impressed by the way the characters of Father Christopher and the young English teacher were drawn. The crises that they faced were not minimised nor over dramatised.
"I think everyone who sees this film will always retain a vivid memory of the terrible events that took place. They will also be drawn into a profound reflection on the limitations of human nature as well as the demanding summons of the Christian faith."
The Archbishop of Birmingham added: "I am grateful to have had a chance to see this film and I look forward to its general release from the 31 March."
For more information see: www.bbc.co.uk/bbcfilms/releases/shootingdogs.shtml
BIRMINGHAM - 30 March 2006 - 430 words