The annual festival begins on September 7th and runs till the 17th; for our African film connoisseurs, we’ve compiled a list of the African films screening at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival.
- Sew the Winter to my Skin [South Africa]
Provocative South African filmmaker Jahmil X.T. Qubeka [Of Good Report] returns with this rousing reimagining of the hunt for John Kepe, an outlaw in 1950s South Africa who robbed from white colonist farmers and gave to the impoverished indigenous poor, becoming a threat to the foundations of Apartheid society.
- aKasha [Sudan/South Africa]
Documentarian Hajooj Kuka takes a self-assured step towards fictional storytelling in this comedy pivoting on an unlikely love triangle between a boy, a girl, and an AK-47 in rebel-held areas of Sudan.
- Farming [UK]
Actor Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje draws on his own life for this electrifying feature directorial debut, about a London-born Nigerian child voluntarily placed in a white working-class home as part of a 1960s social experiment, stranding him between cultures and sending him through adolescence on a twisting journey from destructive self-loathing to perseverance.
- Fig Tree [Ethiopia]
Aäläm-Wärqe Davidian’s unflinching feature debut, set at the end of the Ethiopian Civil War, follows a Jewish Ethiopian teenage girl as she attempts to save her Christian boyfriend from being drafted, even as she and her family are poised to flee the country.
- Lionheart [Nigeria]
In order to save her father’s ailing bus company, competent but perennially overlooked Adaeze must find a way to work alongside feckless uncle Godswill, in the sharp and comically observed directorial debut from Nollywood star Genevieve Nnaji.
- Rafiki [Kenya]
The latest from Wanuri Kahiu charts a precarious love story between two young Kenyan women in a society where homosexuality is banned.
- The Mercy of the Jungle [Belgium/France]
Set in 1998 at the outset of the Second Congo War, Rwandan director Joël Karekezi’s second feature is a propulsive odyssey about a pair of Rwandan soldiers navigating both wilderness and personal existential crises while lost behind enemy lines.
- Look at Me [Tunisia]
Torn between the life he thought he could leave behind in Tunisia and the life he’s created for himself in Marseille, a man finds himself at a crucial crossroads, in Nejib Belkadhi’s latest.
- EXT. Night [Egypt]
When a day in the life of a beleaguered Egyptian filmmaker goes sideways, he witnesses anew issues like class and gender relations, in director Ahmad Abdalla’s touching social satire.
- The Ambassador’s Wife [Burkina Faso/Sweden]
Although she dreamed of a career in opera, the French Ambassador’s wife now lives a restrained life in opulent seclusion in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. With unparalleled precision, Theresa Traore Dahlberg establishes a nuanced and fascinating documentary that subtly delves into the complexity of class, women’s roles, and post-colonialism.
- Freedom Fields [Libya]
Naziha Arebi offers an intimate look at post-revolution Libya through the eyes of an aspiring all-female soccer team, whose struggle to gain mainstream acceptance mirrors the broader challenges facing women in contemporary Libyan society.
- Facing North [Uganda]
Facing North centres on a bride preparing for her wedding day in a small Ugandan village, and the complexity of her decision to put her faith in a man who has left to pursue greater opportunity abroad. Directed by Tukei Muhumuza.
- Brotherhood [Tunisia]
Mohamed is deeply shaken and suspicious when his estranged eldest son returns home to rural Tunisia with a mysterious young wife in tow. Every moment in Meryam Joobeur’s wrenching drama is infused with the emotional complexities of a family reunion, and the consequences of past wounds and misunderstanding.
- Divine Wind [Algeria]
A young man and woman form an intense bond when they are assigned to launch an armed action against an oil-refinery in the North African desert, in the latest from veteran Algerian director Merzak Allouache.
- A Wedding Day [Algeria]
In this rich and assured portrait, a crime boss in exile in Algiers oscillates between his business, friends, and the boredom and melancholy of his daily routine. Directed by Elias Belkeddar.