Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square

Thunder in Guyana

Year: 2003
Country: United States
Run Time: 50 minutes

What do radicals do after they fall in love and get married? For Chicago-born Janet Rosenberg and Cheddi Jagan, a native of Guyana, they travel to the South American British colony and start a socialist revolution. This was in 1943. Soon enough, the Jagans became the most important political figures in Guyana, but they also faced opposition from world leaders such as Winston Churchill and John F. Kennedy. Cheddi was elected prime minister within ten years, and adventurous Janet - a world class swimmer who took flying lessons and didn't give a damn what anyone thought of her - was elected deputy speaker of Parliament. In 1997 Cheddi died, and Janet, still popular with the people who had attained independence from Britain, was elected president - the first white Jewish woman to lead a potpourri of dark-skinned Hindus, Muslims and Christians. Janet's younger cousin, the film's director, weaves in documentary footage of Janet as a young woman, still photos and interviews with her. Now in her 80s, Janet is a font of history, and a true independent spirit.

Suzanne Wasserman

Debra Granik

Amanda Zinoman

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