TANZANIA TRANSIT: A beautiful taste of an all too familiar foreign land

I originally penned this for a guest post on Dandano… enjoy. ‘Tanzania Transit’ may be one of my favourite films of 2018. Aside from the bonus of this documentary gifting me my first onscreen feel of Tanzania, it’s a train movie somewhat in the mould of South Korean director Bong Joon-ho’s Snowpiercer, which I really loved. Of course,… Read More TANZANIA TRANSIT: A beautiful taste of an all too familiar foreign land

BLACK GIRL – Sembene prods at the myth of decolonisation in his blueprint for African Cinema

To immerse yourself in Ousmane Sembene’s 1966 film, ‘Black Girl’ (La Noire de…) is to time-travel to ground zero of African Cinema. Sembene’s extremely lean but layered first feature film was the first by sub-Saharan African, earning him the mantle of the “father of African film”. Yes, there were films produced in Africa during the… Read More BLACK GIRL – Sembene prods at the myth of decolonisation in his blueprint for African Cinema

YESTERDAY – Life on the fringe in South Africa via the confluence of poverty and illness

Every now and then, I come across a film operating outside the conventional constraints of the horror genre that leaves me in a state of distress. The anxiety served up in Denis Villeneuve’s 2013 film ‘Prisoners’ readily comes to mind. It made the idea of caring of caring for one’s kids a terrifying prospect evoking… Read More YESTERDAY – Life on the fringe in South Africa via the confluence of poverty and illness

Black Panther and Ryan Coogler’s definition of Africa

The rambling below contains spoilers to Black Panther!!! Just how angry is Ryan Coogler, If he is at all? That’s been one of the questions on my mind having seen ‘Black Panther’. Marvel gave Coogler the keys to the Black Panther vehicle and he took them to the promised land, delivering an incredibly personal film, … Read More Black Panther and Ryan Coogler’s definition of Africa

THIS LAND – A documentary affirming the value of land for South Africans

A review I contributed to Dandano late in 2017… The 2017 documentary, This Land, directed by Miki Redelinghuys narrows in on the people of Makhasaneni in KwaZulu-Natal and their struggle to overcome governmental neglect, a corrupt traditional hierarchy and the threat of corporate interests. During apartheid, the family and forbearers of the indigenes we spend time… Read More THIS LAND – A documentary affirming the value of land for South Africans

HYENAS – Mambety’s prescient portrait of faux morals in a decaying society

Hyenas (Hyènes) is the story of a wealthy woman’s return to her penurious hometown after decades away. The idea of her homecoming is a vignette Africa is well aware of. Her riches are enticing and her people are swelling with optimism. But reprieve is to come at a high price for this community. She offers… Read More HYENAS – Mambety’s prescient portrait of faux morals in a decaying society

THE TRIBUNAL – Maybe it is time to give up on the Kunle Afolayan stock

Where to start with The Tribunal; the bad writing or bad lawyering? I guess one is a function of the other in what is definitely the worst Kunle Afolayan film I’ve seen. The Tribunal has left me fearing the stock I bought in Afolayan, after 2015’s October 1 is maturing into fools’ gold. The films since… Read More THE TRIBUNAL – Maybe it is time to give up on the Kunle Afolayan stock

Disillusion, apathy and dysfunction; TOUKI BOUKI’s foreshadowing of our existential cul de sac

When did Africans start to lose faith in Africa? How long did it take the buoyant flames of colonialism to be quenched by the decadence of the elite and an underestimation of neocolonialism? Probably in the mid-’60s, and judging by the golden age of Senegalese cinema, this sentiment became truly entrenched in the ‘70s; with… Read More Disillusion, apathy and dysfunction; TOUKI BOUKI’s foreshadowing of our existential cul de sac

TOUKI BOUKI – A surreal love affair with Africa heading nowhere

Djibril Diop Mambety envisions a fantastical world without consequences for his protagonists in his 1973 film, Touki Bouki. But there is an air of melancholy underpinning the narrative because the characters appear to be cogs in a cycle of nothingness. Mambety’s sometimes non-linear narrative coupled with peculiar editing and overly kinetic transitions point towards a… Read More TOUKI BOUKI – A surreal love affair with Africa heading nowhere

Ousmane Sembene’s CEDDO – Everyone wants a piece of the Africa action

One of the earliest sequences in 1977’s Ceddo involves a barter of men for goods. A man in this 18th-century Senegalese village with a rifle strapped on his shoulder, leads two men, presumably ceddo (outsiders) like a pair of antelopes, to a white trader who happens to barter in you regular stuff like yams, chickens, maize… Read More Ousmane Sembene’s CEDDO – Everyone wants a piece of the Africa action