Wooden Hand

Director: Kaouther Ben Hania
Countries: Tunisia and France
Year: 2013
Running Time: 23 min.
Language: Arabic

WOODEN-HAND

Amira, 5 years old, doesn’t like school. In order to avoid going there she finds an unstoppable idea that goes beyond her expectations…

Winter of Discontent

Director: Ibrahim El-Batout
Countries: Egypt
Year: 2012
Running Time: 94 min.
Language: Arabic

Set against the momentous backdrop of the whirlwind protests of Cairo’s Tahrir Square that began on January 25th, 2011, this film by independent director Ibrahim El Batout takes us on a compellingly raw, starkly moving journey into the lives of activist Amr, journalist Farah and State Security officer Adel in the days leading up to the resignation of President Mubarak. Winter of Discontent shows the heady, surreal atmosphere of terror, uncertainty, and mass euphoria that surrounded those days that shaped history, and that continue to do so. It exposes the anger, the deceits, and the lies that people faced everyday during the years of Moubarak’s rules.

The Promise

Director: Akin Okunrinboye
Countries: Nigeria and USA
Year: 2013
Running Time: 6 min.
Language: English and Yoruba

Kemi has been with Femi for five years now. She is tired of waiting, especially since the relationship does not seem to be going anywhere. She loves Femi, but she feels he is playing games. It’s the New Year, and it is time for progress. She has to have progress in the relationship arena. She thinks she is going to get what she wants, but little does she know that Femi has different plans.

The Last Song Before the War

Director: Kiley Kraskouskas
Countries: Mali and USA
Year: 2013
Running Time: 74 min.
Language: French, Tamashek, and English

The Last Song Before the War is a documentary that captures the rise and uncertain future of Mali’s annual Festival in the Desert. The festival history is told from the perspective ofthe festival director Manny Ansar, the musicians who perform, and intrepid travelers from around the world. Against the backdrop of stunning musical performances, the film reveals the challenges and triumphs of creating an artistic event under such challenging economic and political circumstances. After 12 years of success, the Festival in the Desert came to a halt in 2012 when separatist rebels and Islamic militants seized control of Northern Mali. The Last Song Before the War chronicles the 2011 Festival edition, a global display of peace, reconciliation, and the healing power of music.

The Market King / Soko Sonko

Director: Ekwa Msangi
Countries: Kenya and USA
Year: 2014
Running Time: 22 min.
Language: KiSwahili and Sheng

Soko-Soko

When her mom gets sick, Kibibi’s dad must take her to the market to get her hair braided before school begins. Soko Sonko is a hilarious, fish-out-of-water roller coaster of a journey, about a well-intended dad who goes where no man has gone before… because only women have been there!

Something Necessary

Director: Judy Kibinge
Countries: Germany and Kenya
Year: 2013
Running Time: 82 min.
Language: Swahili

Anne is struggling to rebuild her life after the civil unrest that swept Kenya after the 2008 elections claiming the life of her husband, the health of her son and leaving her farm in ruins. Joseph, a troubled young gang member who participated in the countrywide violence is drawn to Anne seemingly in search of redemption. Both he and Anne need to shed the painful memories of their past and move on – but will they be able to?

Sodiq

Director: Adeyemi Michael
Countries: UK
Year: 2013
Running Time: 44 min.
Language: English

Sodiq Adeojo a 20-year-old young man from Peckham, South London, has been charged for the murder of Sylvester Akpalara. In 2004 Sodiq alongside at the time manager Adeyemi, set up a football team together that ran up until 2008. Sodiq’s hopes, aspirations and desires to become a doctor were documented in a film directed by Adeyemi in 2008. In less than 5 years the demise of a seemingly promising young man, from albeit a tough neighborhood, has once again become a loss to society.

Reve Kaduji

Director: Ibbe Daniels
Countries: Belgium
Year: 2014
Running Time: 63 min.
Language: French, English, Italian and Spanish

The moment Serge Kakudji heard the sounds of opera for the very first time as a young boy on Congolese television he immediately fell in love and dreamt of becoming a celebrated countertenor. Despite many doubts of his family, he travels to Europe, determined to make it to the top of the classical opera world where he experiences often ambiguous and divided reactions.

He also wants to bring opera to Congo and found a Congolese opera tradition based on African stories.

Of Good Report

Director: Jahmil Qubeka
Countries: South Africa
Year: 2013
Running Time: 109 min.
Language: Xhosa

A seemingly broken figure drags itself across an arid landscape. Armed and bloodied he removes what appears to be a pair of human incisor teeth out of the crown of his skull. Although in severe pain he still manages to take in the headline of an old newspaper strewn on the dry ground… ”Teacher Shortage in Zimbabwe…”

Ninah’s Dowry

Director: Victor Viyuoh
Countries: Cameroon
Year: 2012
Running Time: 95 min.
Language: Pidgin, English, and Babanki

Ninah is a runaway wife, stuck in an abusive relationship, whose husband finds out that she is pregnant and he comes with his friends to recover the bride price that he paid or take home the woman that he owns. Knowing that she is headed to a life of unending abuse and possibly death, Ninah devises ways to escape.

Living Funeral

Director: Udoka Oyeka
Countries: Nigeria
Year: 2013
Running Time: 21 min.
Language: English

Set in the backdrop of delusional stability, a young girl battling with breast cancer in the last days of her life, arranges a farewell for her family to help ease their pain; a celebration of life… A living funeral

Legends of Madagascar / Malagasy Mankany

Director: Haminiaina Ratovoarivony
Countries: Madagascar
Year: 2012
Running Time: 93 min.
Language: Malagasy

Haminiaina Ratovoarivony writes, directs and edits a spirited road trip story full of nationalist uplift. A thief on the run, a sociology student, an underground reggae DJ and an Indo-Pakistani runaway pack into a Mini-Cooper to visit Jim’s serious ill father. From Antananarivo, the capital of Madagascar, they drive along a raging river to the wild coast, encountering corrupt soldiers and a Japanese geologist preaching the gospel. This entertaining 2012 indie boasts curious scenery and social commentary and the challenges faced by Madagascar’s youth.

Kwaku Ananse

Director: Akosua Adoma Owusu
Countries: Ghana, Mexico and USA
Year: 2013
Running Time: 25 min.
Language: Twi

The traditional West African fable of Kwaku Ananse tells the story of a part man, part spider who spends years collecting all wisdom of the world in a wooden pot. As he tries to hide the pot his little son, Ntikuma shows him the way, which angers Kwaku Ananse that he throws down the pot so it bursts and the wisdom seeps away. The fable is combined with the story of a young outsider named Nyan Koronhwea attending her estranged father’s funeral. Overwhelmed by the procession, she escapes into the spirit world in search for her father. She carries her ambivalence with her into the forest, where she learns the ultimate truth about all human relationships.

Kuhani

Director: Ntare Guma Mbaho Mwine
Countries: Uganda and USA
Year: 2013
Running Time: 7 min.
Language: Swahili and English

This short film was inspired by Ugandan Catholic priest Father Anthony Musaala’s open letter to the Catholic church titled: “The Failure of Celibate Chastity among Diocesan Priests”. Father Musaala is one of many Ugandans who have been persecuted as a result of the countries recently passed Anti Homosexuality Act.

It’s Us / Ni Sisi

Director: Nick Reding
Countries: Kenya
Year: 2013
Running Time: 92 min.
Language: Swahili

Ni Sisi portrays a typical Kenyan community: a harmonious muddle of tribes, intermarriages, and extended families who have lived and worked together all their lives. Then one day rumors begin to spread and suddenly mistrust takes hold. People are identified as belonging to a different tribe rather than by their identity as a person. With mistrust comes a sense of threat and fear, and old friends now turn on each other. In a matter of days, the bonds and alliances are severed just as it did in reality in 2008. They find themselves plunging into chaos, and it seems unstoppable and brutal. Is it possible to learn from old mistakes and has a once peaceful community another chance?

Half of a Yellow Sun

Director: Biyi Bandele
Countries: Nigeria and UK
Year: 2014
Running Time: 111 min.
Language: English

Half of a Yellow Sun picture

Upon returning to a privileged life in newly independent 1960s Nigeria after their education in England, Olanna and Kainene, twins from a wealthy Nigerian family make very different choices. Olanna is living with her lover, Odenigbo in the dusty university town of Nsukka; Kainene turns out to be a successful businesswoman and falls in love with Richard, an English writer. Preoccupied by their romantic entanglements, and a betrayal between the sisters, they become caught up in the events of the Nigerian civil war, in which the lgbo people fought an impassioned struggle to establish Biafra as an independent republic, ending in chilling violence, which shocked the entire world.

Grigris

Director: Mahamat-Saleh Haroun
Countries: France and Chad
Year: 2013
Running Time: 101 min.
Language: French and Arabic

Despite a bum leg, 25-year-old Grigris dreams of being a professional dancer, while he is making some extra cash on the dance floor of his local club every weekend. When his stepfather falls critically ill and he’s forced to smuggle oil to pay the hospital bills. When he befriends Mimi, a beautiful but damaged prostitute, the two will try to start a new life together. But bad decisions begin to catch up with them and their pasts are never far behind, bringing them to a perilous climax.

Fuelling Poverty

Director: Ishaya Bako
Countries: Nigeria
Year: 2012
Running Time: 30 min.
Language: English, Pidgin, Yoruba and Hausa

The oil subsidy placed on petroleum products in 2012 by the Nigerian government was meant to provide a much-needed relief on the cost of living for its citizens. However it was revealedthat about seven billion dollars was stolen from the Nigerian people in one year from the same program that was meant to provide relief for them. It is quite possibly one of the most daring frauds in history. Fuelling Poverty is a documentary that expresses and articulates this fraud.

With music from Femi Kuti and Asa, Fuelling Poverty is another collaboration between the award-winning team of writer/ director, Ishaya Bako and producer, Oliver Aleogena; a joint production between The Allied Film Company and Amateur Heads Media.

Felix

Director: Roberta Durrant
Countries: South Africa
Year: 2013
Running Time: 97 min.
Language: English and Xhosa

Felix still

14-year-old Felix Xaba dreams of becoming a saxophonist like his late father, but his mother, Lindiwe, thinks jazz is the devil’s music. When Felix leaves his township friends to take up a scholarship at an elitist private school, he defies his mother and turns to two aging members of his father’s old band to help him prepare for the school jazz concert.

Faisal Goes West

Director: Bentley Brown
Countries: USA and Sudan
Year: 2013
Running Time: 35 min.
Language: English and Arabic

 

faisal goes west

Faisal puts his family—newly arrived in America—in a tough spot when he loses the family car. Facing the reality that he is not prepared for his dream of American university, he promises to get work. A new friend, Adil, offers to find Faisal a job. After a journey by bus and train, the two arrive at a chicken farm. Life in the new home is not always bad—especially when Faisal meets the beautiful Samia, who is farther along in her own pursuit of university education. Time is dwindling, however, and the family needs money fast. Only through trials and hardship can Faisal learn the tough lessons necessary to gain ground in his new home.