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“Blood Diamond”

bdposter.jpgOk – this film came out last December so we are a little late but it takes a while for new release movies to reach us out here in the bush.  Anyway, we managed to catch “Blood Diamond” at the cinema last weekend.  I’m not sure that you can ever really say that you “enjoy” a movie like this one but it certainly was one to make you think about some important issues.   

Image at left is promotional poster for the movie available at the official movie site here.

Consensus of film critics listed on Rotten Tomatoes give “Blood Diamond” a rating of 6.3 out of 10 and comments that the movie “overcomes its flaws with biting commentary and fine performances” - probably a good way to sum up this film.  Plot summaries and other information for “Blood Diamond” are also available at Wikipedia.

I felt all of the main cast gave excellent performances and Leonardo DiCaprio did a good job with a somewhat unsympathetic character.  Although the film moved along at a rapid pace, the plot was clear with exciting (albeit violent) action scenes.  Perhaps the happy ending involving the Vendy family reunion was a little unrealistic given the grim tone of most of the film.

Of course, “Blood Diamond” is a film with a message and one that those of us in the gemstone industry must take very seriously.  It seems that the diamond industry are concerned at the possible negative effect on demand when consumers see some of the less pleasant aspects of the gemstone industry.  There is no doubt that some types of gemstone mining exploit local people and damage the local environment – informed consumers may wish to buy gems that are more ethically sourced but without a system in place that documents gem source, this is impossible for most buyers.  While the Kimberley Process has gone a long way to reduce the flow of diamonds from conflict areas, there is more to be done and consumer demand is the key to success.

Some further reading on the issue:

Remember, the issue is far more complex than either the movie implies or the diamond industry would have you believe.  Unfortunately, that is the nature of a global industry where there are many steps in the supply chain.  What can consumers do?  Asking for ethical gemstones will encourage suppliers to source them – the resulting demand and dialogue may not solve all the problems quickly but it must help a little.

We are proud of our ethically mined and environmentally friendly sapphires and encourage you to visit our good friends at Brilliant Earth – while you can definitely get a beautiful conflict-free diamond from Brilliant Earth, if you are in the mood for “blue” you just might find one of our own sapphires as well. 

cheers from Andrew and Leah (Aussie Sapphire)