RMPBS Community Cinema: Pushing the Elephant
USA, 2010, 84 Minute Running Time
Genre/Subjects: Documentary, War, Womens Issues
Director Beth Davenport in-person.
Introduced by Academy Award-winner Donna Dewey.
In the late 1990s, Rose Mapendo lost her family and home to the violence that engulfed the Democratic Republic of Congo. In a country where ethnic violence has created seemingly irreparable rifts among Tutsis, Hutus and other Congolese, this remarkable woman is a vital voice in her beleaguered nation’s search for peace.
Now, Rose is confronted with teaching one her most recalcitrant students how to forgive—Nangabire, the daughter who remained behind. Through this intimate family portrait unfolding against the wider drama of war, the film explores the long-term and often hidden effects of war on women and families, particularly those in traditional societies—financial despair, increased susceptibility to rape, and social ostracism.
Pushing The Elephant captures one of the most important stories of our age, a time when genocidal violence is challenged by the moral fortitude and grace of one woman’s mission for peace.
DIRECTOR: Beth Davenport, Elizabeth Mandel