Last update: 07-Dec-2013 1:06 am
Saturday, December 07, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Important but unfinished
As planned, I watched Forward Ever: The Killing of a Revolution, Bruce Paddington’s elegiac documentary about the 1979 Grenada Revolution and its bloody denouement in 1983. The film was shown at various venues in the T&T Film Festival (TTFF), which ends today. This is an important movie, not only because it tackles a thorny subject—there is still no international or regional consensus about the right or wrong of the Grenada Revolution and the subsequent US invasion of the country. Incredibly, this film, released just before the 30th anniversary of the Bishop massacre and US invasion (or intervention, as apologists call it) is the first in-depth film exploration of those events in Grenada.
I suspect this is why the film is, at 150 minutes, egregiously long. Bruce Paddington, its director, is eager to speak to the record. He introduces the film in a voice-over and is heard as the off-camera interviewer in the several new interviews conducted for the film. It is his sympathetic view of the revolution that colours the film, but he takes pains to show multiple points of view of each aspect of the story: the armed coup of 1979 that ousted prime minister Eric Gairy; the subsequent economic and social changes that came with the installation of the socialist People’s Revolutionary Government (PRG); and the bloodbath that decisively ended the Anglophone Caribbean’s flirtation with Marxism.
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