Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Constant Gardener (2005)

This is an okay British movie. After the death of his first wife, Justin, a low-level diplomat (Ralph Fiennes) is giving a speech when he is interrupted by peace activist Tessa (Rachel Weisz) who is upset by Britain’s involvement in the Iraq War. Even though they appear to be opposites, the pair fall in love and get married. The newlywed couple is sent to Kenya on assignment and Tessa becomes upset by the way poor Africans are being abused by a pharmaceutical company. When she is found murdered, Justin seeks to uncover the conspiracy behind her death.

It is based on the 2001 novel by John le Carré. The film was shot in Kenya. The crew was so upset by the poverty in the country that they set up a trust fund to provide freshwater, an extension to an elementary school, and a bridge for easier access to a nearby health clinic. Weisz won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. In 1996, Pfizer conducted tests of an antibiotic on 100 children in Nigeria and five of them died. The children were already severely ill with meningitis. In February 2009, the company agreed to an out-of-court settlement.

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