African Film Festival, Berkeley: January 27-February 17, 2011

The 2011 edition of the popular African Film Festival features films from eight countries ranging from Ivory Coast to Mali. It moves from the claustrophobic din of one Cape Town flat to the frenetic sprawl of African immigrant culture across Europe, from hair salons in Ghana and Nigeria to an imagined future of an East Africa without water, and even finds time for another visit with the crowd-pleasing, pint-sized animated star Kirikou, back for even more adventures.

This year, the series is complemented by three classics of African cinema from the World Cinema Foundation (see page 7): Djibril Diop-Mambéty’s legendary Touki Bouki (1973), whose African dreamers and hustlers are the cinematic predecessors of those found in Elaine de Latour’s raucous Beyond the Ocean; Shadi Abdel Salam’s Al Momia (1969), acclaimed as one of the greatest Egyptian films of all time; and Trances (1981), with extraordinary footage of the Moroccan music group Nass El Ghiwane.

New or classic, documentary or narrative, the films of the African Film Festival spotlight the changes, moods, and conflicts of a continent then, as now, in flux. While challenging and expanding our image of Africa, they also confirm the importance of self-representation.

Click here for film screening schedules and other information.

About BFC/A

The Black Film Center/Archive at Indiana University was established in 1981 as the first archival repository dedicated to collecting, preserving, and making available historically and culturally significant films by and about black people. The BFC/A's primary objectives are to promote scholarship on black film and to serve as an open resource for scholars, researchers, students, and the general public; to encourage creative film activity by independent black filmmakers; and to undertake and support research on the history, impact, theory, and aesthetics of black film traditions. View all posts by BFC/A

One response to “African Film Festival, Berkeley: January 27-February 17, 2011

  • Luke

    This festival sounds great. It’s always good to see African films getting this sort of exposure. In my experience it’s always been difficult to find many foreign films that aren’t from Europe or Asia. African films in particular don’t really get the distribution they deserve. I only just got a chance to see White Wedding, which was submitted by South Africa to the previous Oscars. It came out on dvd a couple days ago, and it’s excellent. It’s proof that South African films can more than hold than own against Hollywood films of the romantic comedy and roadtrip genres. If you’re interested you can see a trailer at http://www.whiteweddingmovie.com

    I hope the film festival is a hit!

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