The story of the child soldiers in Uganda is one that is impossible to forget. Told in their own voices, this movie contrasts the stark reality of living in a warzone – being a refugee in your own country – with the hope of schoolchildren in a national music competition. The human spirit is apparently so resilient, that social and community connections, no matter the conditions, will help a child rebuild a semblance of normalcy – a few moments of validation and happiness.
There were some things that were hard to listen to/watch, but there was the beauty of a boy consuming himself in mastery of the xylophone. Girls and boys making their costumes for their dance competition. All of them practicing their enunciation for their Western Choral event.
Talk about underdogs, these kids have very little in the way of resources, but their quest to demonstrate their skill, talent, and relevance among the rest of Uganda’s pupils is palpable.
As far as the film’s delivery goes, there’s no pesky director visually inserting him/herself into the movie. Not even the voice of a narrator is heard. Editorial and expositional commentary is made with subtitles and other written screen notes. Though there is obvious editing – good editing, IMO – the movie feels like it really is the voices of the children: plain and simple.