No Place for a Rebel
Thursday, 03.10., 11.00 am, kommkino
Saturday, 05.10., 3.15 pm, kommkino
Sixteen years after rebels abducted him as a child, Opono Opondo returns home to Uganda as an adult war commander. Now he has to readapt to civil society.
Opono grew up to become a war commander in the Lord’s Resistance Army of Joseph Kony. Now, he must fight for acceptance back home. The film shows Opono’s fight for his future, while struggling to come to terms with his past and to reconcile with his family. While Opono pursues a new career as a carpenter – he opens a shop and designs business cards – he attempts to reconnect with the people closest to him: his brother, his uncle and his best friend who used to be in the LRA with him. A daytrip to visit his mom painfully exposes how the scars of war also continue to divide them.
One day Opono’s former comrade, LRA top commander Dominic Ongwen, is captured and taken to the International Criminal Court in The Hague. Ongwen is charged with seventy counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Questions of accountability start to dominate Opono’s thoughts. Suddenly he gets the opportunity to join the Ugandan army. Opono has to decide whether he will pick up his arms once again, this time to fight his former comrades.
NO PLACE FOR A REBEL is an intimate account, a journey into Opono’s world, complicated by the trauma that comes as much from being silenced in the present as from a youth destroyed by violence. Yet above all, the film shows the courageous attempt of a human being to re-shape his fate.
ARIADNE ASIMAKOPOULOS, MAARTJE WEGDAM
Ariadne Asimakopoulos is a director and sound engineer, but also has a background in Conflict Studies and Human Rights (MA). In 2010, she conducted research in northern Uganda on reintegration and justice in the case of people like Opono, who are both victim and perpetrators of violence. This research laid the foundation for No Place for a Rebel. Besides her work as a filmmaker, she works as a consultant and trainer in the field of youth, peace and conflict transformation.
Maartje Wegdam is a director and cinematographer who has worked as a camera journalist for Dutch public broadcasting corporations before enrolling in the Documentary Media Studies program at The New School in New York City. Upon her return to The Netherlands in 2011 she started working as director and camerawoman for documentary film. Maartje holds a MSc in International Communications from the University of Amsterdam.