The 2019 African World Documentary Films

African Diaspora

Joseph Boateng (Ghana) - 14min

Second generation young woman goes back to Ghana, West Africa after living in UK most of her life. Very relevant to the social, cultural, historical exploration of Ghana and how to discover your diaspora. The young woman has organized a sports development program for youth.


Mark Freeman (USA, Ghana) - 6min

This is a site-specific contemporary dance set in Jamestown, a traditional fishing community in Accra, the capital of Ghana. Rising stars in Ghana’s dance community, Julius Yaw Quansah and Sena Atsugah are enmeshed in the challenges of daily life. Drawing from Ghanaian customs and traditions, they cast a wide net, remaking their world.


Aderonke Adeola (Nigeria) - 38min

Sexual Assault of Women, Decolonization of Patriarchy, of the body. Discussion of women's rights/feminism that lacks in Nigeria, especially having to do with sexual assault. Film is composed of interviews, images, recollections of histories and stories.

Bakosó: AfroBeats of Cuba

Eli Jacobs-Fantauzzi (USA, Cuba) - 51min

Afrobeat has helped create a new genre called Bakosó, which itself is beautiful proof that the exchange between Cuba and Africa did not end with the Transatlantic slave trade. Through stunning visuals and a score created by the founders of the genre, the film shows the technology, culture and landscape that shape this African-Caribbean fusion.

Children of the Incursion

Ina Sotirova, Eka Campbell (Jamaica) - 24min

In May 2010, the Jamaican government carried out a controversial military operation in downtown Kingston’s notorious inner city communities of Tivoli Gardens and Denham Town, where the area don Christopher ‘Dudus’ Coke ruled a state of his own. The Tivoli Incursion, as the operation came to be known, left many dead and many more scarred for life, especially the children. Seven years later, now in their late teens and early twenties, they reflect on the traumatic experience and how it continues to affect their lives. Children of the Incursion is a poetic journey through memories, realities and universal truths seen through the eyes of inner- city youths that attempts to understand the rampant and increasing violence in Jamaica.

Congo - A Political Tragedy

Patrick Kabeya (Congo) - 87min

This is a history based film telling the political tragedy of Democratic Congo.

Conquest and Prison

Mark Freeman (USA, South Africa) - 8min

Conquest and Prison is a two-part suite combing text, spoken word and site-specific dance set in Grahamstown, South Africa. Part I –– Oscar’s Journey –– is a solo performance by Oscar Buthelezi, the first African choreographer to win the prestigious Kurt Jooss Prize (Road 2016). This personal work combines personal poetic reflection and a performance at British built Ft. Selwyn. Part II –– Child’s Play–– features Lorin Sookool and Julia Wilson at the Old Gaol, which imprisoned 1000’s of black South Africans. This virtual duet in words and images attempts to reclaim and re-imagine this site of suffering.


Mark Freeman (USA, South Africa) - 26min

This documentary is an introduction to the vibrant diversity of contemporary dance in South Africa. Rooted in both tradition and the idioms of modern movement, this half-hour documentary introduces new audiences to work ranging from site-specific solos to multi-media physical theater. The struggle for freedom is ongoing in post-apartheid South Africa.

Emails to My Little Sister

Soloman A. Mekonen (Ethiopia) - 35min

Not another-film-about-refugees or “the misery” of Africans for there is never a single story. Emails to My Little Sister is an anthropologically intended film project concerning the phenomenology of Blackness in Berlin. The film, however, takes place in Ethiopia where becoming Black is reflected back on in siblings email conversations.

Golden fish, African fish

Thomas Grand (Senegal) - 60min

The Casamance region in the South of Senegal is one of the last area of traditional fishing in West Africa. Facing the growing menace of industrial fishing companies and overcoming very harsh working conditions, the fishermen of Casamance contribute to the food supply (ou food safety) of many African countries. But for how long?

I’m Beautiful In Every Shade

Ana Scheu Amigo (Uganda) - 35min

Follows the lives of people of all ages who are albino in Africa. This skin condition has impacted how people perceive them and how they take care of themselves

In Stiches

Hannah Rafkin & Meg Robbins (USA, South Africa) - 44min

Vernacular comedians Noko Moswete, Luphelo Kodwa, and Zicco Sithole are flipping the script. Addressing the long-ignored South African majority, these artists are decolonizing comedy. Audiences are hooked. Vernac shows buzz with unparalleled energy, somewhere between a rock concert and a sermon. Never before have black South African audiences shared such powerful catharsis, led by magnetic comedians who look and sound like them. If laughter is the best medicine, these artists act as guerrilla medics, using humor to tend to the untreated masses.

Maid In Hell

Søren Klovborg (Saudi Arabia, Kenya) - 59min

Women from Africa (Kenya) are being sent to be house maids in Saudi Arabia with little to no human rights.

Meet the Band

Mohau Mannathoko (Botswana, South Africa) - 60min

Meet the band is a jazz infusion live performance documentary about taking original Botswana hit songs then playing them live with a jazz feel. The documentary also addresses challenges faced by musicians and how they can conquer them. It includes oral and written narrations of the songs played by the band.

Mis(s) Interpreted

Ayesha Kosaka (USA) - 5min

The film is a short film on the suppression of the black female voice. Although society traps black women in a box, we want to express that we can still move past the stereotypes and break through.


Mohau Mannathoko, Tlotlo Rasesia (Botswana, South Africa) - 28min

A gripping documentary addressing the contentious issue of black hair. The evolution of hair from pre-colonial era to post looking at the natural hair and weave phenomena.

Nollywood In Focus

Iké Udé (Nigeria) - 35min

Insider perspective of the film industry, Nollywood, by looking at the history of film in Nigeria and what is has become now.


John Rowe (Ethiopia, USA) - 86min

For many generations the Kara tribal people of the Omo Valley (southwest Ethiopia) believed some children are cursed and that these "cursed" children bring disease, drought and death to the tribe. The curse is called "mingi" and mingi children are killed. Lale Labuko, a young educated man from the Kara tribe was 15 years old when he saw a child in his village killed and also learned that he had 2 older sisters he never knew who had been killed. He decided one day he would stop this horrific practice. The film follows Lale’s journey over a five-year period along with the people of his tribe as they attempt to change this ancient practice.

Please Darling, Don’t Die Before Me

Debbie Soni (West Africa) - 31min

The film explores the lives and stories of widows in Africa. There is a stigma around being a widow even though there is added responsibility, their fears, their widow rights, and hopes for the future.

R1514, the waiting

Salvador Alemany (Spain) - 14min

The Sahrawi refugee camps near Tindouf, Algeria, began at the end of 1975 in one of the toughest places in the world, the Hammada, the devil’s garden. The Sahrawi have made a home under extreme conditions, a desert with frequent sandstorms and temperatures over 50 °C in summer, with no water but rare heavy flash rainfalls that flood the camps. This is the camp’s 43rd anniversary.


Directed by Daniel Etim Effiong (Lagos, Nigeria) - 80min

This film explores the hierarchy of skin--light verssus dark. It discusses how this has split up communities and identities.

Tegwan's Nest

Loring McAlpin (USA, South Africa) - 44min

Tegwan’s Nest brings subtle perspective to race, land and memory through this unusual story of a South African farm. The film follows the family members and current residents of this farm in South Africa.

The City's Champions

David Pradel (USA) - 83min

From beginning to end, a journey of glory and pain for a men's basketball team that became a family of brothers and made history for the city of San Diego during the 2016-2017 season. A championship story like no other.

The Dream of El Dorado

Miriam Alexa (Germany, France) - 12min

"Coming to Europe for an African is like El Dorado." This is a biographical journey of an African trying to find "home" in France. She tells her experience of acclimating to this culture. A mother tells how this migration has separated her from her children and the hardships she has aced.

The Forgotten Kingdom? Chronicle of the North

Roland Maniaya Sumani Seini (Ghana) - 67min

The film tells the history of Ghana in order to promote peace and unity. The improvement of education in order for success of the people and society is the motive of this film.

The Mayor's Race

Loraine Blumenthal (Germany) - 80min

This film follows the mayor of Bristol, a black man in England. The narration of the mayor explores why it's so critical to have a black man representing Bristol because of its rich history.

The Rise of The African Female Drummer

Akin Alabi (Nigeria) - 26min

Drumming has been, culturally, a men driven art. This films tells the process and path of a female talking drummers and how women are gaining more rights.

We Are All Migrants

Rowenna Baldwin (UK) - 20min

Activism and performance that take place at this annual carnival are discussed.

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