Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Cascade Festival of African Films

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The Athlete, directed by
Rasselas Lakew and Davey Frankel


To see a gold mine of films out of Africa, try very hard to attend the Cascade Festival of African Films, Thursdays through Saturdays, Feb. 4 through March 5 in Oregon at Portland Community College and surrounding venues.

Films from Algeria, Ghana, Cameroon, Kenya, Uganda, USA, and other places will feature and highlight the people of Africa and those who have connections to the continent. Such topics as albinism, present day slavery, romance, and the Olympics are explored in these unique and compelling films. Where else in Ameica could you find such a treasure of cinema?

Watch a clip from the film Stolen, set in Western Sahara:



STOLEN
Directed by Violeta Ayala and Dan Fallshaw
From: Australia, Western Sahara, 2009, 75 min.

Directors Ayala and Fallshaw set out to make a simple documentary about family reunions in Saharawi refugee camps controlled by the Polisario Liberation Front. Their project became much more complicated when they discovered that many of the dark-skinned refugees were in fact the slaves of those with lighter complexions. Or were they? Was there really widespread servitude or was it something more culturally subtle? The Polisario denied the filmmakers’ assertions, labeled them cultural imperialists, and tried to stop the project. The result is a powerful, suspenseful film, which raises thought-provoking questions about the possibility of documentary objectivity. The film has provoked an ongoing international controversy. Winner of the Best Feature Documentary Prize at the 2010 Pan-African Film Festival in Los Angeles.

In Hassaniya, Spanish, and English with English subtitles.

Click here to visit the Cascade Festival of African Films Website.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yes dear I sure wish that I could go to Oregon for the film fest. Loved the clip. Thank you

MaDear

Alicia Michele Benjamin said...

Man, how I wish I could go too!!! Well, I'll let you know whenever it comes out on DVD.

De nada!
alicia

Luke M. said...

This looks like a great time. I wish there were more events and festivals closer to where I'm from. For the most part I see my foreign films (African or otherwise) on dvd, as I'm sure most people do. I've been trying to catch up on African films that have been submitted to the Oscars over the years and this week I finally got to see White Wedding (which South Africa submitted a previous year). There's a trailer at http://www.whiteweddingmovie.com and I highly recommend it, it's an excellent example of how films can remain upbeat and optimistic while still approaching important topics like Apartheid and the wounds that have yet to heal from its aftermath.

Alicia Michele Benjamin said...

I too wish more African film were near to me. This festival made me want to visit Portland for the first time -- if only I could afford it! Thanks for the clip on White Wedding. I had heard of the film, but didn't know what it was about. The actors are great and the material seems very entertaining. Thanks for commenting and come back again.
peace,
alicia

Anonymous said...

Nice site! Thank you for maintaining it. Keep posting that way.

Alicia Michele Benjamin said...

Thanks!