A United Kingdom
What I did for love
Cinema Nova - Thursday 8 December 2016, 6:30pm
Running time: 111m
Country: United Kingdom
Classification: PG (Mild themes, violence and coarse language)
Release date: 26/12/16
Rating: 7/10 (ME 3/5, DP 4/5)
Ruth (Rosamund Pike) is a young woman living in post World War II London when she meets Sereste (David Oyelowo), a tribal king studying law. The two soon fall in love and marry before returning to Bechuananland (Botswana) where Sereste's uncle (Vesi Kunene) is regent, but the mixed marriage threatens the priorities of the British rulers.
A United Kingdom is a historical drama set against the turmoil of the introduction of the introduction of apartheid in South Africa and a shrinking British empire. Villainous bureaucrats (Jack Davenport and Harry Potter's Draco Malfoy Tom Felton) are two dimensional characters with few redeeming features and even less depth, but it's the love story between the leads and the complex relationships with Sereste's sister and aunty (Terry Pheto and Abena Ayivor) that gives this film heart and soul. It's a film about racism, exploitation and acceptance, but also a human story about love that transcends colour, tradition and expectations. The script is a little stiff, but there are some quality performances that defy the limitations of the dialogue. Intriguing and enjoyable.