Hotel Rwanda takes place in the years to1994, during the horrific genocide by the Hutus to hundreds of thousands of Tutsis. In Rwanda, you were a Tutsi or a Hutu and intense violence and hatred toward the Tutsi was encouraged and supported through the radio. Fighting, killing and opposition had been going on for several years, and when a new president signs a peace treaty to put the insane turbulence to an end, he is murdered. Paul Rusesabagina is a hotel manager at the nicest and most colorful hotel in their city of Rwanda. When news of the president reaches, European guests and staff leave the hotel to not be involved with the weeks that will worsen for the injustice to the Tutsis.
Paul is assigned to be held in charge of this hotel and is threatened with the death of not only his wife and small children, but his neighbors and his friends. Paul continues to give everything he has to save their lives, while harassment of the Tutsi’s is increasing rapidly. Continuing, as the days of the killing and hatred grow stronger, Paul sees the horrific situations of orphans and families who have no place else to go and need the survival and safety of Paul’s hotel. As Paul let’s these people into his hotel, he finds himself with almost no one to turn to and is left with duty to save the innocent. One scene revives him to conquer this duty, as he views hundreds of dead bodies who had been murdered.
A UN colonel does have his back and attempts to save lives living at the hotel by assigning visas to many of the “guests”. Yet the attempts of smuggling the people twice will not last because of the hatred of the radio to the Tutsis that is determined to make the massacre more successful. During this time, Paul realizes and assembles courage to dedicate the protection of not only the lives he knows but the innocent people outside the walls as well, and his hotel turns into a refugee camp. According to the movie, Paul saves 1,268 refugees and a million corpses were left behind. Rusesabagina and his wife Tatiana find their lost nieces and are safe by reaching the border and are filled with freedom and relief.
The character of Paul is played by Don Cheadle and he played his character with such intensity I felt as if I were living in the movie and as if I were standing there watching everything taking place. Before watching this film, I never knew such horror and a terrible genocide had taken place. You surly don’t think about the horror of the present or the past as often as you should, and this film made me think, worry, and fear of all I never knew and don’t know. In the years leading up to 1994, other countries stood by and did nothing and by the will of God, one person, stood up and took on images that scarred him for life, even with the terror of planning a better death for his wife and children. This movie is definitely one of the most inspiring movies I’ve ever viewed, and my emotions had changed constantly, I was captured.