DVD 121 mins IMDB 8.5 (24,024 votes) top 250: #49
Hotel Rwanda
Lions Gate Films (2004)
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(2005 )
Drama, War
UK  /  English

Don Cheadle Paul Rusesabagina
Sophie Okonedo Tatiana Rusesabagina
Joaquin Phoenix Jack
Nick Nolte Colonel Oliver
Xolani Mali Policeman
Desmond Dube Dube
Hakeem Kae-Kazim George Rutaganda
Tony Kgoroge Gregoire
Rosie Motene Receptionist
Neil McCarthy Jean Jacques
Kid Sitholo Head Chef (as Kid Sithole)
Fana Mokoena General Bizimungu
Mabutho 'Kid' Sithole Head Chef (as Kid Sithole)
Jeremiah Ndlovu Old Guard
Lebo Mashile Odette
Antonio David Lyons Thomas Mirama
Leleti Khumalo Fedens

Director Terry George
Producer Terry George; A. Kitman Ho
Writer Keir Pearson; Terry George
Cinematography Robert Fraisse
Musician Jerry 'Wonder' Duplessis; Rupert Gregson-Williams; Andrea Guerra; Martin Russell
User Credit 1 Naomi Geraghty
User Credit 2 Ruy Filipe

Hotel Rwanda tackles one of the most horrifically ugly events in recent history, when the Hutu extremists of Rwanda initiated a terrifying campaign of genocide, massacring hunderds of thousands of minority Tutsis (who had been given power by the departed Belgian colonists), while the rest of the world looked on and did nothing. Don Cheadle stars as Paul Rusesabagina, the hotel manager at the fancy Les Milles Collines hotel in Kigali. Paul is a Hutu, and a very successful businessman who smoothly greases the wheels, making powerful connections in all strata of Rwandan life. His wife, Tatiana (Sophie Okonedo of Aeon Flux), is a Tutsi. She urges Paul to use his influence to help local Tutsis, who are being harassed and beaten with increasing frequency, but Paul will only use the political capital he's built up to help his own family, if and when they need it. Soon enough, the violence escalates, and the Hutus begin their genocide of the Tutsis. European guests and staff at the hotel are flown out of the country, and Paul is left in charge. He finds that his conscience won't allow him to watch as the innocent are slaughtered, and before long, the hotel has become a well-appointed refugee camp. Paul is seen as a traitor by some, putting his life in danger, and the predicament of his "guests" grows more precarious every day, but despite good intentions on the part of a journalist (Joaquin Phoenix) and a UN peacekeeping colonel (Nick Nolte), the rest of the world is not eager to intervene and stop the massacre. Hotel Rwanda was directed by Irish filmmaker Terry George (Some Mother's Son), who co-wrote the script with Keir Pearson. — Josh Ralske

Edition Details
Barcode 027616925121
Region Region 1
Release Date 4/12/2005
Packaging Keep Case
Screen Ratio Widescreen 2.35:1 Color (Anamorphic)
Subtitles English; French; Spanish
Audio Tracks ENGLISH: Dolby Digital 5.1 [CC]
FRENCH: Dolby Digital Surround
Layers Single Side, Dual Layer
No. of Disks/Tapes 1

"A Message Of Peace: Making Hotel Rwanda" Documentary
"Return To Rwanda" Documentary
Selected Scenes commentary by Don Cheadle
Audio Commentary by Director Terry George and the Real-life subject of the film, Paul Rusesabagina, with select commentary by Wyclef Jean
Personal Details
User Lookup 1 DVD Copy
User Text 2 When the world closed its eyes, he opened his arms.
Links All Movie Guide
DVD Empire
Amazon US

Trivia: Nick Nolte's character (Col. Oliver) is modeled in part on Lt. Gen. Roméo Dallaire, the Canadian commanding officer of the UN Peacekeeping mission in that country who attempted to interfere with the Rwandan Genocide despite his superiors' indifference to the atrocity. Dallaire was also the subject of Sundance audience award documentary Shake Hands with the Devil: The Journey of Roméo Dallaire (2004), and witnessed such horrible acts in Rwanda that he later suffered severe post-traumatic stress disorder. Despite these facts, this is the only fictional character (name and facts) depicted in the film. (more)

Goofs: Factual errors: The other hotel where Paul Rusesabagina keeps a safe, has a sign calling it "Hotel Diplomat". As Rwanda was fully francophone in 1994, the real hotel was called and spelled "Hotel des Diplomates". (more)

[first lines]
George Rutaganda: [voiceover] When people ask me, good listeners, why do I hate all the Tutsi, I say, "Read our history." The Tutsi were collaborators for the Belgian colonists, they stole our Hutu land, they whipped us. Now they have come back, these Tutsi rebels. They are cockroaches...

Awards: Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 12 wins & 24 nominations (more)