10 African films to watch out for, N°4

Here are another 10 films we’re hoping to see in the (near) future. First, three “fiction” films. ‘Winter of Discontent’, a film by director Ibrahim El Batout is set against the backdrop of the 2011 Tahrir Square protests, zooming in on the the lives of activist Amr (Amr Waked), journalist Farah (Farah Youssef) and state security officer Adel (Salah Alhanafy):

‘Kedach Ethabni’ (“How Big Is Your Love”) is a film by Algerian director Fatma Zohra Zamoum probing “tradition and modernity” through the lives of a three-generation family in Algiers. An English-subtitled trailer here and an interview with the director here.

‘Black South-Easter’ by director Carey McKenzie, starring Tony Kgoroge, is set in Cape Town and tells a story of police corruption. I’m told it has a very good soundtrack too. No trailer yet.

And seven documentaries:

‘Babylon’ is a film by Ismaël Chebbi, Youssef Chebbi and Ala Eddine Slim. In the aftermath of its own revolution, Tunisia received an influx of displaced persons from Libya, who got housed in camps. The film traces, without any voice-over commentary, the construction and closure of one such camp. A fragment:

(Three more fragments here.)

‘Noire ici, Blanche là-bas’ (“Black here, White there”) is an addition to the growing diasporic body of recent and very personal films about the searching for one’s roots. Born in Congo to a French father and a Congolese mother, and having moved to France at a young age, Claude Haffner films her own ongoing quest, returning to and visiting relatives in Mbuji-Mayi. No English trailer yet:

Philippa Ndisi-Herrmann is working on a documentary about the development of “Africa’s largest port” on the island of Lamu, off the Kenyan coast. We Want Development (but at what cost?)

In ‘Our Bright Stars’, a film directed by Sidi Moctar Khaba and Frédérique Cifuentes, various people from South Sudan share their expectations of the new nation:

François Ducat and Frank Dalmat have made a documentary about Zimbabwean music band Mokoomba (‘d’une rive à l’autre’; “from one [river] bank to the other”):

(Here’s another fragment.)

In ‘One Day in the Madrassa’, filmmaker Youssef Ait Mansour goes on a journey to meet his brother who has chosen to live in a secluded madrassa in the Moroccan desert:

And, also set in Morocco, ‘Bahr Nnass’ (“Sea of Tears”) by director Marouan Bahar is a critical film that follows a seaweed-digging diver as she struggles to make ends meet for her family:

* Our previous new films round-ups: part 1, part 2 and part 3.

Further Reading

Goodbye, Piassa

The demolition of an historic district in Addis Ababa shows a central contradiction of modernization: the desire to improve the country while devaluing its people and culture.

And do not hinder them

We hardly think of children as agents of change. At the height of 1980s apartheid repression in South Africa, a group of activists did and gave them the tool of print.

The new antisemitism?

Stripped of its veneer of nuance, Noah Feldman’s essay in ‘Time’ is another attempt to silence opponents of the Israeli state by smearing them as anti-Jewish racists.