As a general rule, it’s worth remembering that Hollywood is in the business of mythologising, rather than retelling history. The Woman King, which was released in cinemas this week, represents the latest effort at constructing a past more in tune with 21st century progressive political narratives. In the film, King Gezo of Dahomey and his loyal Amazons – an elite band of women warriors – struggle to free his kingdom and his people from the evils of the slave trade, the dominance of the Oyo empire, and the creeping tendrils of European colonisation.
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