A character in “Ayanda” – one of the films at our 2016 AFF – used these words:
“My mission is to capture what it means to be African. I feel we’ve been completely misrepresented. It’s not all civil war and kwashiorkor…It’s really understanding the vibrancy, the colour, the flair that is Africa. It’s embracing our music…our culture…our arts…sewing our own tapestry. So what I’m looking forward to doing with this story – this journey – is to answer the question: who is the modern African?”
This quotation serves as a perfect introduction to the essence of the 2017 edition of the African Film Festival, New Zealand.
So what are we offering this year? Perhaps you love the work of the great Senegalese musician, Baaba Maal. One of this year’s films provides a unique insight into the man and his music. An African take on the after-life? It’s here. How does a young woman from Niger handle the complexities of love, engagement and marriage? Come and find out! How do the problems of being Transgender look in an African context? What about the issues arising from cross-cultural relationships or from having a child living with disability? The festival tackles those topics too! Many of the films also explore the theme of the clash between tradition and modern ideas – especially for women. How appropriate, then, that four of the films are actually directed by women. Another stereotype overturned!
We have put together a diverse, fascinating and thought-provoking range of films, but they are not interesting solely because of their themes. Lovers of the medium will be impressed, also, by the directorial skills, by the range of techniques and by the excellent cinematography on display.
We are delighted that Rialto Cinemas, Newmarket have once again agreed to host the festival. We are also very proud of the impressive line-up of patrons, sponsors and organisers of African film-festivals, world-wide, who are supporting our 2017 event. In particular, the opening night promises to be something extra-special, with many of those people in attendance – not to mention the Ethiopian coffee-makers, traditional food, singing and drumming which are all part and parcel of the evening. Come along to help us celebrate!
The closing night also includes an added opportunity: we are offering a double-feature, with a glass of wine provided during the intermission. You can purchase tickets for the two-film package or for either film separately.
To find out full details of the 2017 AFF programme (including film-synopses and trailers), and for access to ticketing-information, visit the website at: https://africanfilmfestivalnz.org.nz/
(Incidentally, as the first two years of the festival were so well received by both the public and the media, we have decided to extend our reach in 2017 by running a shortened version of the festival in Wellington 3rd to 5th May this year. Details for the Capital’s edition of the AFF are also to be found on the website).
The organisers of the 2017 African Film Festival, New Zealand are excited to be forerunners, once again, in widening the scope and range of Arts and Culture in Auckland. Please do all you can to support our venture.