Movie Short Review: ‘Katja Bentrah’s Watu Wote (All Of Us)’

Greetings again from the darkness. The Al-Shabaab Islamic terrorists have created escalating distrust between Christians and Muslims in eastern Africa. The border between Kenya and Somalia is especially treacherous. Director Katja Benrath brings us the harrowing true story from 2015 of the attack on a Mandera public bus where a group of Muslims stood in solidarity to protect fellow Christian passengers from a terrorist attack.

Writers Julia Drache and Brian Dunene show, in frightening detail, a slice of traumatic daily life that these folks face. This 18 minute gem follows a young woman as she takes the bus on a cross-country journey. We learn through her interactions with another passenger that her family was murdered by Muslim terrorists and she carries the anger with her on this trip to visit her sick mother.

It’s an unfortunate aspect of human nature that we tend to condemn an entire group because of the actions of a few. This true story reminds us that in fact, it’s the humanity that binds us, rather than tears us apart. Amazing strength and being committed to doing the right things in life, allowed these passengers to stand up to those committing atrocities under the same label (Muslims) that these folks hold dearly. It’s a powerful story, and a terrific short film that reminds us that no matter how difficult doing the right thing can be, it’s always worthwhile.

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