Synopsis by Nathan Southern
Set against the backdrop of the 100-day Rwandan genocide, Robert Favreau's harrowing drama Un Dimanche à Kigali cuts back and forth between two time sequences. One unfolds as a flashback, prior to the genocide, when journalist Bernard Valcourt (Luc Picard) meets waitress Gentille (Fatou N'Diaye) at the Hôtel des Mille Collines (a woman many years his junior) and falls deeply in love with her. They strive to maintain the purity and sanctity of their love, but as political tensions escalate, the two find themselves pulled in increasingly opposite directions. The present sequence unfolds after the holocaust, when Bernard returns to the country alone, after he and Gentille have been separated by Rwandan bureaucracy. He comes back exclusively in search of his lover, but has few leads and the dimmest of hopes for locating her, as he combs through the ruins. The contrast between the two time periods depicted onscreen suggests the extent of the devastation that the genocide wrought.