BY Fredrick Ngugi, 11:00am April 24, 2017,

24th NY African Film Festival To Revolutionize the People

The lineup for the 24th New York African Film Festival is finally out. African Film festival Inc.

The Film Society of Lincoln Center and African Film Festival Inc. have released the lineup for the 24th New York African Film Festival, which will take place between May 3rd and May 9th at Lehman College, Maysles Cinema, and the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) in New York.

This year’s festival, whose theme is “The People’s Revolution,” is intended to add impetus to the growing wave of protest and calls for reform that is being championed by a new generation of artists throughout Africa and other parts of the world.

The festival will present 25 feature-length films and 36 short films — all of which are celebrated films from 25 countries from Africa and abroad.

Festival’s Purpose

Maheen Bonetti

Bonetti. Photo credit: Getty Images

Speaking to Face2Face Africa in a recent interview, the Founder and Executive Director of African Film Festival Inc. Mahen Bonetti said she started the festival in order to allow Africans to tell their own stories and offer the world the real African perspective as opposed to having some voice-over that is controlled by others.

“The goal of the festival is to help us to find ourselves again and to revisit many things that can jog our memory of who we are,” Bonetti said.

“Yes, we can take a look at certain wrongs and be critical of our part in them, but we also must celebrate our contributions.”

She says this year’s festival is special because it happens at a time when the world is facing some major social, political, and economic problems, including terrorism, racism, and separatism.

Therefore, Bonetti hopes the seven-day event will bring people together and empower them to bring about the change they want to see.

This Year’s Lineup

Nigerian film director Akin Omotoso is expected to kick off the festival with his award-winning film “Vaya,” which won the Special Jury Prize for Outstanding Film at the 2016 African International Film Festival (AFRIFF) and took the Best Screenplay Award at the Africa Magic Viewer’s Choice Award in 2017.

Watch Zizou’s trailer here:

Other films expected to feature in this year’s festival include Ethiopia’s “Ewir Amora Kelabi,” Tunisia’s “Zizou,” and South Africa’s “Kalushi and “Uprize.”

Watch Ewir Amora Kelabi’s trailer here:

Here is the full lineup for the festival:

Screening Venues:

Walter Reade Theater (165 West 65th Street, between Broadway and Amsterdam) and Francesca Beale Theater (144 West 65 Street, between Broadway and Amsterdam)

Show Times:

Wednesday, May 3 (Walter Reade Theater)

7:00 p.m.            *Vaya (115 minutes) – OPENING NIGHT FILM

9:00 p.m.            Opening Night Reception—Furman Gallery

Thursday, May 4 (Francesca Beale Theater)

6:00 p.m.            *Kemtiyu, Séex Anta – Cheikh Anta (94 minutes)

8:30 p.m.            * Noem My Skollie (Call Me Thief) (120 minutes)

Friday, May 5 (Francesca Beale Theater)

2:00 p.m.            Vaya (115 minutes)

4:30 p.m.            Play the Devil (90 minutes)

6:30 p.m.            *Hairat (7m) + Ewir Amoura Kelabi (85 minutes)

8:45 p.m.            *Green White Green (102 minutes)

Saturday, May 6 (Francesca Beale Theater)

1:00 p.m.            *Shorts Program 1: Quartier Lointains: Justice (87 minutes)

3:45 p.m.            *Zizou (99 minutes)

6:15 p.m.            * Shorts Program 2: Shorts from Senegal (101 minutes)

8:30 p.m.            *Kalushi (110 minutes)

Sunday, May 7 (Francesca Beale Theater)

1:30 p.m.            *Accra Power (49 minutes) + Footprints in Pan-Africanism (77 minutes)

4:15 p.m.            *Malcolm X (20 minutes) + Uprize! (58 minutes)

6:15 p.m.            *Jojolo (12 minutes) + Ayiti Mon Amour (88 minutes)

8:45 p.m.            *Play the Devil (90 minutes)

Monday, May 8 (Francesca Beale Theater)

2:00 p.m.            Noem My Skollie (Call Me Thief) (120 minutes)

4:30 p.m.            Zizou (99 minutes)

6:45 p.m.            *Shorts Program 3: New York Shorts (79 minutes)

9:00 p.m.            Mapantsula (105 minutes)

Tuesday, May 9 (Francesca Beale Theater)

1:30 p.m.            Hairat (7 minutes) + Ewir Amora Kelabi (85 minutes)

3:30 p.m.            Kalushi (110 minutes)

6:00 p.m.            Light Reception

7:00 p.m.            *Town Hall Event


Bonetti further promises all attendees of this year’s festival a spiritual experience that will revitalize as well as educate them on many issues. She adds that the films are a catalyst to spark a larger discussion about Africa.

“I get goosebumps sometimes when I hear the conversations and exchanges after a film,” Bonetti reveals.

Last Edited by:Abena Agyeman-Fisher Updated: April 24, 2017


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