April 20, 2017
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Overlooked & Underrated Docs & Features (click on broll or dschwartz for all his posts)
Sweet Dreams: Reconciliation in Rwanda
Produced, directed, and edited by sister/brother team Lisa Fruchtman and Rob Fruchtman, "
" tells the story of the creation and opening of an ice cream shop in Rwanda.
In telling that one story the Fruchtman team tells many stories: The Rwandan genocide in 1994 in which one million people were killed, countless more maimed, and the entire country traumatized; the national reconciliation process; the creation of an all-women drumming troupe in a culture which never had women drummers; and a few personal stories of the survivors.
Initiated by theater director Kiki Katase, the drumming troupe – named 'Ingoma Nshya' – welcomed women from both sides of the national conflict with one proviso: "To leave the categories of the past at the gate." Katase didn't stop there. She came up with the idea to open Rwanda's first ice cream shop.
Jennie and Alexis, founding partners of Brooklyn's
Blue Marble Ice Cream
, left the comforts of home to support this humble initiative which, in turn, supports the noble pursuit of national healing.
The film follows the 60-member troupe – orphans, widows, wives and children of perpetrators – as they struggle to break tradition, to beat incredible odds, to face the inevitable challenges, create a successful ice cream shop, and garner international notoriety and invitations.
"Sweet Dreams" is one of those films you don't want to end – especially to hear and see the women drumming, singing, and dancing. To see the infectious joy and disciplined teamwork with the knowledge of the unspeakable horrors each woman faced is both gut wrenching and deeply inspiring.
"Sweet Dreams" is being shown at this year's
Mill Valley Film Festival
on October 7 and 9.
D. Schwartz September 16, 2012