The Road to Redemption
ROAD TO REDEMPTION is a documentary about survival and healing in the aftermath of brutal conflict, and is inspired by Elma Shaw’s moving novel Redemption Road. Elma Shaw is a young Liberian writer and one of the few women novelists in her country’s 175-year history. Like all Liberians, Elma suffered the pain of years of brutal civil war. With the bloodshed over, Elma has dedicated her life to healing her and her nation’s wounds – as an artist, activist and a humanitarian. Her story reminds us that girls and women suffer as both victims and combatants in civil conflict, and must heal wounds not borne by men, but often ignored in post-conflict environments.
Elma’s novel, Redemption Road, tells the story of Bendu, a Liberian woman whose memories of war leave her tortured with regret and anger. Bendu has a choice to seek revenge against those who wronged her or seek redemption for herself and her burdened spirit. In the end, Bendu embraces redemption through truth-telling and by giving voice to the long-hidden secrets of war experience that have locked her in darkness.
Elma’s novel is used as the basis for this documentary to explore the real stories of three women who were combatants in rebel armies during the civil war. These women must face the communities that they terrorized, but more importantly they must face their own tortured memories of what they have witnessed, what they have done, and what has been done to them. They have committed to peace through communication and reconciliation and by asking all who bore witness to the evil and suffering of war to share their stories. These women transform pain into empowerment through courage and the healing power of art and storytelling.
ROAD TO REDEMPTION celebrates the women of Liberia who together are building a future for this beleaguered African nation, and is a reminder that unless Liberians speak honestly and forgive themselves and one another, the deeply rooted causes of the conflict will reignite the country into violence. This intimate look at the Liberians’ road to redemption is part poetry, part history and part cautionary tale.
To purchase ROAD TO REDEMPTION, visit our store by clicking here.
Sound Edit & Mix:
David B. Deniger