PS2 PC GameCube Contact Us DVD Search Win Stuff
XBox GBA N-Gage Zodiac Home Advertise Promotions

DVD Reviews: Amandla!

The Final Say!

Review Score
Reviewed by Yianni Pak
Review Date: June 2004
Distributed by:
The AV Channel
Running Time: 108 mins





In the 1940s, the Afrikaner National Party gained control of South Africa. Unfortunately for the majority of the populace (who were black), these white supremacist trouser-snakes instituted a terrifyingly moronic and utterly inhuman policy called Apartheid. Some have claimed that religion was the motivation for this new act, but it seems far more likely that it was implemented as a means of increasing control of the land and economy of the nation. 

Whatever the motivation for Apartheid, there can be no argument that it spelled disaster for the black members of society. Brutal segregation laws were instituted, and South Africans of colour were treated as lesser humans for a great many years. Despite being the massive majority, they were powerless against the gun-toting thugs that enforced the white rule. BUT… 

They still had music. Amandla! Is a look at the way music was used by the black South Africans as a method of peaceful protest. I don’t really love traditional African music, but it was really interesting to see interviews with these people, for whom music truly was an escape from the stark horrors of their reality. The highlight of the film (for me) – two ladies reminisce about singing to white people in their own language. The whites cheer, not realizing that these apparently obsequious “couloured folk” are singing “watch out whites, we’ll shoot you, we’ll kill you”. Nice work ladies. 

Amandla! is not a film for everyone, but it’s an interesting lesson in history and an example of the way in which music really can be used to lift people out of despair, and make a difference in the world. Good stuff.


The video quality varies from fairly good, in the recent footage, to fairly bad in the old footage. No-one can be blamed though – it’s old film footage and nothing more could be expected. The video does the job and that’s all that can be asked for from a documentary of this nature.


The audio quality is fine. Obviously there’s a lot of African music, and it all sounds as it should. There’s not really much to tell – it’s not an astounding soundtrack, but it all works perfectly. No complaints.


There are some good extras. We get an audio commentary, a Q&A session with the director, producer and a famous African musician, and live footage of the aforementioned musician playing. There’s also some production notes and the obligatory trailer. Nice.

Copyright ©2004 www.impulsegamer.com