Darwin's Nightmare

Not available for screening anymore

Darwin's Nightmare (Le Cauchemar de Darwin)

Directed by Hubert Sauper

  • France, Austria, Belgium 2004; 107 min
  • Original version: English, Russian, Swahili
  • Genre: Documentary
    • Best Film - CPH:DOX
    • Vienna Film Award - Viennale
    • Special Prize, Community Cinema Award, Robert and Frances Flaherty Prize - Yamagata IDF
    • Label Europa Cinemas - Venice IFF
    • FIPRESCI Prize - Sydney FF
    • Best Documentary - European Film Awards
    • Best First Film - César Awards

  • Venice Days

    Toronto IFF - Real to Reel
    San Sebastián IFF - Zabaltegi
    Karlovy Vary IFF

    Nomination for Documentary Feature at the Academy Awards

Press Quotes

'Darwin's Nightmare' is also a work of art... There are images here that have the terrifying sublimity of a painting by El Greco or Hieronymus Bosch.

A.O. Scott, The New York Times

A fascinating cautionary tale in the guise of a documentary showing how, in the age of globalisation, things can evolve in the worst possible of unforeseen ways.

Time Out London

Shot in an immediate, no-frills style by a two-person crew, the film is unhurried and seemingly unstructured.

David Rooney, Variety

Hubert Sauper's staggering documentary is essential viewing on the survival.

Jessica Winter, Village Voice

Darwin's Nightmare strings together cruel ironies into a work of harrowing lucidity. It illuminates the sinister logic of a new world order that depends on corrupt globalization to put an acceptable face on age-old colonialism.

Dennis Lim, Village Voice

Darwin's Nightmare strings together cruel ironies into a work of harrowing lucidity. It illuminates the sinister logic of a new world order that depends on corrupt globalization to put an acceptable face on age-old colonialism.

Dennis Lim, Village Voice

Darwin's Nightmare is an urgent, horrific, yet at times oddly blinkered vision of the crisis of modern Africa.

Owen Gleiberman, Entertaintment Weekly

A howl waiting to be heard.

Moira Macdonald, The Seattles Times

It immerses you in its reality one toe at a time, until suddenly you are in over your head, gasping for air as the horror of the situation reveals itself in all its savage devastation.

Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times

Darwin's Nightmare is many things, including an environmental cautionary tale, a critique of globalization and a portrait of a community, country and continent in deep crisis.

Ann Hornaday, Washington Post

An uncompromising portrait of how global capitalism can exploit an area's resources to the point of near annihilation.

Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter

A haunting, beautifully made reality check.

Jennie Punter, Globe and Mail

Articles

Review: ‘Darwin’s Nightmare’

David Rooney, Variety

The Descent of Man

Dennis Lim, Village Voice

"Darwin's Nightmare": A searing look at exploitation and despair in Tanzania

Moira Macdonald, The Seattles Times