Sarah-Tai Black

Rafiki (Wanuri Kahiu, Kenya/South Africa/France/Lebanon/Norway/ Netherlands/Germany) — Discovery

By Sarah-Tai Black / September 12, 2018

By Sarah-Tai Black Firsts are almost always in some measure definitive. To be the first Kenyan film to ever premiere at Cannes, as Wanuri Kahiu’s newest feature film Rafiki was, is to be placed under an incredible weight of expectation. To be banned in your home country due to a supposed “intent to promote lesbianism”…

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If Beale Street Could Talk (Barry Jenkins, USA) — Special Presentations

By Sarah-Tai Black / September 11, 2018

By Sarah-Tai Black There is perhaps no contemporary filmmaker better suited to adapting the work of James Baldwin than Barry Jenkins. Much like Jenkins, Baldwin’s work is less expository than it is a feeling made concrete: a translation of black consciousness, space, and time into words that are as generous as they are unambiguous. His…

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The Mercy of the Jungle (Joël Karekezi, Belgium, France) — Discovery

By Sarah-Tai Black / September 9, 2018

By Sarah-Tai Black Joël Karekezi’s second feature, The Mercy of the Jungle, is a propulsive film that uses the visual and dramatic potential of hermetic environments to create a story that is both broad in scope and direct in vision. Taking place at the outset of the Second Congo War in 1998, the Mercy of…

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Emu Runner (Imogen Thomas, Australia) — Discovery

By Sarah-Tai Black / September 3, 2018

By Sarah-Tai Black The result of a 15-year-long collaboration between first-time director Imogen Thomas and members of the remote New South Wales community of Brewarrina, Emu Runner struggles to strike the right balance between collective art-making and authorial command. In spite of this, 11-year-old Rhae Kae Waites commands the screen with a soft yet precocious…

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