I attended this screening for RISING FROM ASHES because Kernel Andrew got sick and could not make it. I wasn’t overly excited about it, I mean who wants to spend there afternoon watching a sport’s documentary you know nothing about and getting home late? Best decision I have made in a long time. The film was amazing, truly heart warming and breaking but also one of the most inspirational things I could have hoped to have seen in a long time. If you love a good docco, you love sports, you like the sound of Forest Whitaker or you just like a good film then this is for you! Sadly it is only getting a very limited release and I urge you to see this film!! In fact I am going to help you. Thanks to our friends at CURIOUS DISTRIBUTION we have 10x double passes to giveaway but look at the bottom of the article at the locations it is playing (and to find out how to win) – you really want to live in the vicinity so you can see it! If additional cinemas get added I will update the article. RISING FROM ASHES is not yet rated but I imagine a PG rating, it runs for 80mins and releases JUNE 19th – tickets sent out on or around June 12th..





The film was made over 6yrs and was completely funded by donations, $800000 to be precise. It follows the heartwarming and hope filled inspirational awesomeness of a cycling team being formed and turned into an internationally recognised team that even managed to compete in the 2012 Olympics. But the thing about this film, it may have a lot of cycles in it and be centred around cycling but it is much more than a cycling film, it is a film about redemption and hope, second chances and love. Cycling legend Jacques “Jock” Boyer moved to Rwanda to help these guys set up the cycling team and ended up becoming a father figure to most of them and still lives there running the Rwandan International Cycling Team.

The cyclists, and Jock himself, all have a past. The cyclists have all been through the Rwandan genocide and have seen entire families wiped out. The most heart warming thing is these kids are from both sides of the genocide but the team is a brotherhood and they are the family they lost. I even feel a bit teary writing about it. What these guys went through is beyond comprehension. But they are the most positive, determined and happy bunch who have overcome literally the impossible have become inseparable and they are taking on the world now.




This team literally has risen from the ashes, all cliches aside they saw one out of five of their people slaughtered in the 1994 genocide and most of them are orphans, they could not read or write and could not trust anyone. They lived in squalor, had no healthcare and were all malnourished. The team has sorted them all out, they are now national heroes and have created much hope for their country, they give the people something to believe in. The film could have been swallowed alive in melodrama but it goes nowhere near it, they don’t want you to feel sorry for them, they want you to get on board and follow their dreams.

It tells the story of Rwanda, a story I really knew little about, it gives you insights into small experiences of these kids and these experiences are horrific but it never dwells, it quickly moves through and from this insight you can see the person onscreen, you know what drives them, you can see how their humor is so strong when they are laughing and you can see why, when on tour, they refuse to stay in their own rooms and all share a couple of beds. You can see how tragedy has formed these guy and while the tragedy is horrific Team Rwanda is light years away from that time in their past.




Since release the film has basically destroyed award’s ceremonies and is close on twenty international film festival wins. The guys ride on and Team Rwanda goes from strength to strength. Adrien Niyonshuti went on to compete in the 2012 Olympics in Cross Country Mountain Bike Racing after missing out on the road racing. He did not fare the best at the Olympics and Mountain Bikes were not even his specialty. The film alludes to him doing well in the Olympics but never shows the result. He came 39th out of 40 entrants but after I read this it did not bother me, it would have been amazing if he won and we scored a Hollywood ending, but it was not about his placement, it was about his journey of getting there, of joining a brotherhood of peace and sport with friends he loves and that love him and for literally rising out of the ashes. Besides 39th at the Olympics is still about 1500000 places better than most 🙂

I loved this film! I can’t pass judgement on something that taught me something, did it well and inspired me beyond belief, if I lived what they went through I would probably kill myself not defy despair and rise to the top.

Be sure to suss out the film’s website HERE.

In Australian cinemas June 19 at the following cinemas:

Cinema Nova
Event Cinema Manuka
Event Cinema Newcastle

Palace Leederville
The State Cinema


4 and a Half Pops


With special thanks to CURIOUS DISTRIBUTION to win one of the 10x double passes to RISING FROM ASHES you need to either like and share this post on Facebook or retweet/ favourite it on Twitter, you then need to answer the following question.

Firstly, just an FYI on how to increase chances of winning a salty comp; commenting on the review generally holds you in better stead of winning as opposed to just comp sexing :)

WHAT IS THE BEST SPORTS DOCUMENTARY ALL TIME AND WHY? Mine is a toss up between TOUCHING THE VOID or THE CRASH REEL. There are so many to choose from – I was quite surprised – this link may help you HERE.

If you do not have Facebook and Twitter then get with the times old timer haha – You can still enter, leave your entry below and email me at jkdigitaldesigns@gmail.com telling me you don’t have social media 

Prizes will be awarded based on skill and selected purely on the thoughts of the judges, said judges being the Salty Kernels.

The prizes will be sent in the next week or two. Good luck! Oh, and minor housekeeping – huge apologies for overseas readers, this competition is only available to Australian residents.



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