Narrated by Roscoe Lee Browne, Haiti: Harvest of Hope is the quintessential primer for understanding the roots of the current crisis in Haiti. The film dramatically captures seminal moments in the history of Jean-Bertrand Aristide and the Lavalas movement that swept him into the presidency in December 1990.
Haiti: Harvest of Hope was originally planned as a documentary about democracy coming to Haiti with the election of Jean-Bertrand Aristide in December 1990. During the final editing of the original (late September 1991) Haiti was struck by yet another military coup. Editing of the first version came to a halt as Kevin Pina (the filmmaker) returned to Haiti and spent the next three weeks chronicling the brutality and machinations of Haiti’s new military leaders and their supporters.
Kevin Pina returned to Haiti in late July 1993 just after the negotiation of the Governor’s Island Accord between the Haitian Government in exile and General Raoul Cedras. Pina returned again in 1994 to film Aristide’s return to Haiti. The world television premiere of Harvest of Hope was in Haiti on Mother’s Day, March 28, 1994. The broadcast was dedicated to the mothers of Haiti who sacrificed so much during the years of the coup to restore democracy to Haiti.
The Creole version was produced in association with Jean-Claude Martineau who also introduced the film on Haitian National Television. The first English version of Harvest of Hope was shown to a sold-out house at the Mill Valley, California Film Festival in the summer of 1994.
Never having received wide distribution since, Harvest of Hope is a rare film that few have had the opportunity to experience. The final director’s cut was completed in 1998 and has only been seen by a select few. (DVD, 57 minutes, 1998)