Exploiting Africa Academy Awards

Following the Academy Award nominations earlier this week, we introduce the Exploiting Africa Academy Award (EAAA) nominations to recognize films who do the best against stiff competition to portray the most insulting and exploitative images of Africans, usually being heroically saved by some white people. We include links to the trailers.

Machine Gun Preacher. This one is so exemplary that it inspired the EAAA in the first place. A commercial film based on a violent ex-con turned violent Christian who goes to central Africa to shoot bad guys and rescue any children still alive after the cross-fire. Principal white saviors : based on “true(?)” story of ex-biker-gang-member Sam Childers, supported in the movie by a beautiful model playing his ex-biker-gang-member-wife.

The Reckoning. About how the International Criminal Court protects African females and children against male African killers. Principal White Savior: Luis Moreno-Ocampo.

Darfur. About how Western correspondents protect African females and children against male African killers. Principal White Saviors: macho journalists supported by one attractive female journalist.

The Vice Guide to Liberia. OK it’s actually a web-based TV series from the Vice media empire, but it’s so horrifically exploitative (baby cannibalism, enough said), we had to include it. Principal White Savior: the Vice correspondent , although it’s very unclear how he’s saving anyone but himself.

An older classic:

Blood Diamond.  Educated the movie-going audience about the acronym TIA to be used whenever anything horrible happens in the movie -- “This Is Africa”. Principal white saviors: mercenary and smuggler Leonardo di Caprio supported by gorgeous journalist Jennifer Connelly.

Please vote for your favorite after a few minutes scanning the trailers - we will announce the winner after enough votes come in.

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Credits: we went outside of DRI/Aid Watch to consult the real experts: Kate and Amanda from Wronging Rights. DRI/Aid Watch contributors include William Easterly, Laura Freschi, Vivek Nemana, and David Rice.