Saturday, March 23, 2019


Ushering in its 35th year, this exotic international festival brings us all genres of films that tell their own riveting African stories.  156 films to stimulate, enlighten and tickle your funny bone, this international festival bravely shines the African sun into our own realm. And we learn more things under this sun.


LA MISÉRCORDE DE LA JUNGLE (Directed by Joel Karakezi) ****

The second war in Congo in 1988 pits Rwandans against Congolese. Sergeant Xavier and Faustin, a young soldier get cuts off from their unit. They must travel through the jungle to reach safety. But this is not an easy feat. They even disguise themselves as Congolese, and get taken in by a village that teats them like family. The lines of loyalty get blurred. Tragedy stalks them, but the jungle trek went on too long, and one wonders why they are not bitten alive. One also wonders why the sergeant’s fabulous watch is not stolen from him at the end which was not clear at all.


 LE PROCES 2.0 (Directed by Nadia Zouaoui)

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Bombarded with hate mail both digitally and in letters by Fascist Quebeckers who hate her head wear, her sex and her religion, Nadia has calmly and with great poise confronted it all. The film bombarded us with the same points shown in different ways, but it was far too long and as such her poignant doc was weakened. Quebec’s Charter of Values set forth by by Pauline Marois and her gang of cowards once again resurrected with the CAQ party. I honestly believe Quebec can’t change; choosing such appalling anti-humanist views is as old as the priests that once ran the schools and churches here.


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A great Haitian singer/guitarist/actor who takes us through the history of music via great singers from Haiti and beyond. Ranna was the way of the people to express themselves via dance and singing. He exiled himself to Montreal as his anti-Duvalier songs became a threat to his own life. 

FIG TREE (Directed by Alamork Davidian)

Confusing and chronologically hard to follow, the film makes 16-year-old Mina the central heroine of this Ethiopian tale involving love, sacrifice and the prospect of a new home in Israel. Mina loves her cousin, Eli, so she does everything to subvert the pending immigration to Israel if it means Eli is not coming along. kidnapping youths though is the way of war, and Eli's future is bad. it's the director's first feature film and it shows. She needs a better editor. Rodas Gizaw as Mina was outstanding.

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