By Terri Lee Sylvester

DETROIT (WWJ) – Everyone, yes everyone, should see ‘Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom’ which chronicles the life of former South African President Nelson Mandela. The movie is touching; it’s powerful; it shows — as President Barack Obama stated during Mandela’s memorial service in Johannesburg — that we can change; and it’s especially timely following Mandela’s passing earlier this month (Dec. 5) at the age of 95.

‘Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom’ was adapted from Mandela’s 1994 autobiography of the same name. It stars award-winning actor Idris Elba as Mandela and Naomie Harris as his longtime wife, Winnie Mandela.

Starting when Mandela was a small child in South Africa’s rural Cape region, the film has a lot of ground to cover in 141 minutes. But, screenwriter William Nicholson (Shadowlands, Gladiator, Les Miserables) and director Justin Chadwick (The First Grader, The Other Boleyn Girl) do an admirable job.

“Mandela’s life was a roller coaster before he went to prison, whilst he was in prison – his personal heartache at being torn away from his family – and after he was released when as a relatively old man he had to face a very violent time in South African history,” Chadwick said.  All of that is covered in the film including, as Chadwick points out, “a unique love story.”

‘Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom’ is an important film about an extraordinary man that’s NOT to be missed.  You may even want to get your tickets before heading to the theater to avoid what could turn out to be long lines.  Yes, it’s that good. 

Visit the official website here.

Rated PG-13.

See you at the movies!

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