Sunday, February 11, 2007

The Last King of Scotland

Down to Winchester to see this last night. I found it hard to watch. James McAvoy (from 'Shameless') plays Dr. Nicholas Garrigan - the young Scottish medical graduate drawn into Idi Amin's entourage as his personal physician.

Garrigan is so 'young bloke in his early twenties': - driven by sex; egotistical and arrogant; full of himself but completely naive. Weren't we all.

As the film progresses, he is sucked into the meat-grinder which is Amin's Uganda. Anyone who has had to work with a quasi-psychopathic boss (haven't we all) will re-experience the visceral combination of omnipresent fear and entrapment. I wondered why being redragged through this experience could conceivably be classified as entertainment.

Amin (Forest Whitaker - brilliant) says at the end to the beaten-up Garrigan, slumped in front of him: "You think this is some kind of game - but ... it is real". Yes, it was real enough for me, even only as a film.