Netflix has released Black Earth Rising, a Forgiving Earth Production in association with BBC. This Netflix Original Series is based on the Rwandan genocide. To give a background, Tutsis were mass slaughtered in Rwanda during the Rwandan Civil War that started in 1990. The Hutu majority government was responsible for it. This was between the time period of 7th April and mid July, 1994. 70% of the Tutsi population was killed in it.
Black Earth Rising is the story of a girl who was rescued from the genocide by Eve Ashby’s (Harriet Walter) partner. Eve, an international lawyer, adopted her and called her Kate Ashby (Michaela Coel). Even though Kate is physically rescued, emotionally she never is. Her past always seems to catch up with her. She is never seen with a smile on her face.
Kate lives in London with Eve and works for barrister Michael Ennis. Michael has a daughter who is comatose, as result of a crash, which we learn in the later episodes, was the result of her following a professional lead. Eve takes on a case that changes their lives forever – one where the accused is a man who fought to stop the genocide in the first place. Kate, who is aware that she is a Tutsi, is perturbed by this and has a heated exchange with Eve. Kate, later on, takes on a war crime case with Michael Ennis.
Alice Munezero is arrested for shooting a priest Father Patenaude. Katy and Michael set out to prove that she is innocent. Her investigation into the war crime gets her threats. Kate even visits Africa. She finds Ed’s gravestone and asks for it to be restored. He was the one who rescued her when she was a baby. Kate also finds the mass graves where only the bones of Tutsis exist. She finds it with Nkanga’s help – the man who is always looking out for her.
Kate’s quest to find her roots is truly an emotional journey full of trials and tribulations. Black Earth Rising is nothing like what we have ever seen before.
The story plot. We have always looked at genocides from a political or the army’s point of view. Looking at it from a survivor’s point of view is deeply moving.
Michaela Coel who plays Kate Ashby, a Tutsi adopted by Eve, is BRILLIANT. Her eyes, her dialogue delivery, her voice – they refused to let us look away from the screen. The casting couldn’t have been better.
The scene that changes Kate’s life forever – when Eve flies out for the case against General Simon Nyamoya – if it could be put down in words, its ‘BAM’. Nothing about it predictable. We would want you to watch it, to realise its impact.
The scenes are interspersed with Black and White animation, that tells the story about the genocide. It is just gorgeous and depressing, at the same time.
Not a thing.
An unmissable, magnificent series that brings forth a flurry of emotions towards the genocide, its survivors and the men responsible for it.
Cast and Crew
Cast: Michaela Coel (Kate Ashby), Noma Dumezweni (Alice Munezero), Ronald Guttman (Jacques Antoine Barre), Danny Sapani (General Simon Nyamoya), Tamara Tunie (Eunice Clayton), Harriet Walter (Eve Ashby), John Goodman (Michael Ennis), Harriet Walter (Eve Ashby)
Writer, Producer, Director: Hugo Blick
Executive Producer: Greg Brenman
Producers: Abi Bach, Hugo Blick
The Netflix Original Series Black Earth Rising is streaming now !