I saw Queen of Katwe a few weeks ago, and even now, the movie has stayed with me. That’s how much of a lasting impression it’s left.
A movie with substance. With sorrow and laughter. With sacrifice and triumph. With real world problems, and real world solutions.
I’ve not been able to find another movie worth watching in the cinema since. How could I go from that to Hollywood’s usual drivel of made up heroes solving made up problems in a tawdry mashup of guns and explosions, mayhem and murder? Seen it. Seen it. Seen it. Not interested in seeing more of the same, with more of the same faces. None of those movies left me in tears one minute, and in mirth the next. In trepidation. And then relief. None of them took me through such an intense emotional roller coaster to the light at the end of the tunnel.
I remember the scene of the flood. The fear, worry and anger. The crescendo of sound that died at the exact same moment as her sister’s declaration. I remember the scene at their first tournament with the empty bunk beds. Where were the children, I wondered. I remember the scene between husband and wife, the tension as he shared his decision on the job offer, and her subsequent response. Humanity at its finest!
I remember the scene at the hospital.
What a movie!
A standing ovation!
Unfortunately, in our sorry excuse of a world, a movie such as this would have its bevy of detractors. In the world we live in, so many seem depressingly devoid of any humanity. The Whiners. The Deplorables. All focused on why Disney would spend millions on the story of a woman who isn’t the best of the best; making such claims as a case of “AA double down.” You can’t help but feel sorry for such individuals. There is obviously rot where their hearts should be. That they would dig so deep to find something to complain about in a story that can only be described as pure inspiration. A girl, who at the start of her chess journey, couldn’t read or write because her widowed mother couldn’t afford to send her to school. A girl who through grit, determination and encouragement eventually became able to compete internationally.
“Do not be so quick to surrender your king.” A lesson for us all.
Weeks later, nothing else at the box office has piqued my interest. Where is one to find so much packed into one movie?
I wait, patiently, for another.