The civil war in southern Sudan killed over 1.9 million civilians, and by the time the war ended in 2005, 4 million had fled their homes. These two films follow several male refugees, called “lost boys”, back to their country to be reunited with their families. In 22 YEARS FROM HOME by Malachi Leopold (2009, 36 min.), Kuek Aleu Garang recounts being separated from his family at the age of 6, the deadly forced marches to refugee camps in Ethiopia and Kenya, and eventually arriving in the U.S. and settling in Chicago. At age 28 he returns to Sudan to find his family and help start rebuilding his country. In REBUILDING HOPE by Jen Marlowe (2009, 78 min.), Gabriel Bol Deng, Koor Garang and Garang Mayuol follow similar journeys in 2007 with mixed success. Their return journeys are also powerful and inspiring, but time has forever changed some relationships, and some villages now look upon them now as outsiders. They, too, pledge to help rebuild their country, and worry that Sudan’s newfound peace is on politically shaky ground.
Kuek and Garang, who are Chicago residents, will also join us for the screening.
Click on the title above for a trailer.