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Diamonds and Rust (2000)

A documentary showing the tensions between the multinational crew aboard a rusting diamond dredging ship off the coast of Namibia.


Adi Barash, Ruthie Shatz (as Ruth Shatz)


Ruthie Shatz
2 wins. See more awards »




On the trawler The Spirit of Namibia, moored off the coast of Namibia, diamond mining goes on around the clock. On the ocean floor the supply of the coveted little diamonds seems endless, but their capture is muddy with politics and fraught with racial tensions. Without commentary, filmmakers Adi Barash and Ruthie Shatz plunge us into the daily life of an international crew working in the service of a faceless mining conglomerate that owns not only the ship but the surrounding waters as well. As they do battle with the rusty old boat and its dubious rewards, the men are drawn into contemplation of their situation. Their social matrix is a revealing microcosm: white South Africans spouting racist theories, Cubans who write poetry and speak of love, an Israeli security manager who makes himself the enemy, Namibian deck hands who find themselves colonized in their own country. Written by Anonymous

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The beginning credits misspell Ruth Shatz name as "Ruth Shaz". See more »

User Reviews

One of the best docs
23 November 2004 | by JohnSealSee all my reviews

This astonishing documentary takes place aboard a diamond dredger anchored off the coast of Namibia. The dredger is owned and operated by the De Beers Corporation, the world's largest diamond processing company. The crew is diverse and fractious: the engineers South African, the captain and cook Cuban, the security officer Israeli, and the deckhands Namibian. The South Africans are well educated and white (and one of them is bluntly racist), the Cubans are low key and friendly, the Israeli is a major league asshole whom everyone hates, and the Namibians are generally treated like dirt. Though there's clearly social stratification in the Spirit of Namibia, a leaky rustbucket that barely stays afloat, everyone aboard is clearly under the heel of De Beers, who constantly postpone vacations or medical leave. For 73 minutes you'll see life on board the good ship Free Trade, where workers from around the world produce vast wealth for their corporate masters whilst earning peanuts themselves (the Namibians earn around $150 a month). An astonishing indictment of capitalism that succeeds at every level and completely avoids polemic.

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English | Hebrew | Spanish | Afrikaans

Release Date:

2000 (Israel) See more »

Also Known As:

Yahalomim Ve-Haluda See more »

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