Posted by: da_nibbler | January 16, 2010

Review: ‘Invictus’

As soon as the film opens we are greeted by one of the most famous songs in recent history. At first I didn’t remember its significance, but it made me immediately aware of the change and greatness to come. I know I get easily swept up in the emotional rollercoaster that a film can be, but I dare you not to be fully immersed in what is going on here.

Rugby to unite a torn nation is as genius an idea as it is stupendous and newly elected President Nelson Mandela, played by Morgan Freeman, is constantly surrounded by people thinking the latter rather than the former. Yet nothing can deter this man on his quest to heal his country. If only more world leaders were as enlightened a man as he is.

With the help of the South African rugby team’s captain Francois Pienaar, played by Matt Damon, Mandela manages to bridge the divide Apartheid had grated into South African consciousness deeper than the Grand Canyon.

This film makes learning about our history fun and entertaining. As dull and lengthy some moments can be it is mere exposition for the showdown that is the World Cup. And what a showdown it is indeed. I don’t want to give anything away, but seeing the All Blacks doing their Haka reminded me of my time in New Zealand and what a fun sport Rugby is.

Eastwood managed to bring across the feeling of witnessing history while watching Invictus. One can’t help but be totally enthralled by what is going on and touched by two opposing sides of the same nation coming together despite their differences and violent past. With all the characters involved it still boils down to Freeman and Damon to deliver the goods as the seemingly only two men ready to bring about much needed change. Both show their best performances in their careers.

Invictus is an inspirational story about integrity, redemption and the power of one man changing the world. It’s an amalgam of a biopic and a sport film. Just don’t expect a well-flowing mix, but rather one following the other.



  1. I’ve played rugby for 9 years. Now I can’t because of an accident, but it is still my favourite sport.

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