A Taste of South African Cinema”

Post-apartheid South Africa: We are happy to be able to bring you this taster programme which demonstrates much of the talent both in front and behind the camera that has made cinema from South Africa some of the most sought after that audiences wish to see.  The programme provides a reminder of some of the early films made during the apartheid era (Mappantsula) and others made in the following 2 decades presenting some of the challenges that the country has had to deal with

‘Hijack Stories’ ‘The Craddock Four’; some of the resilience and heart that demonstrates the survival instinct that have brought its people so far Izulu Lami; alongside a constant reminder of the rich cultural heritage that is at the heart of the country’s identity and rooted deep in its DNA with the film Drum .   

 The weighty presence of a world icon as the country’s hero and president, who passed away this year, has left one of the most enduring legacies for South Africa and for all humanity.  There will be many films about Nelson Mandela but here are two small documentaries made by South African filmmakers during his time that he would have seen and known about. Lionel Ngakane’s ‘Nelson Mandela:  The Struggle is my Life’ narrated by Lionel a contemporary of Mandela (a dear friend and colleague ), who lived in exile in London during the apartheid years, and made during those years;  a personal profile about the Mandela’s stand and the principles of his resistance: and a newer film ‘Mandela’ from a South African filmmaker of a subsequent generation telling the story of Mandela’s incarceration and the political machinations which after many years led to his release from the Robben Island prison in 1990 after 27 years of incarceration.

Both films are reportage in style and packed with archival material.  They are included here as the festival’s tribute to the life of a man whose legacy will be with us for generations to come.


Hijack Stories
Oliver Schmitz - South Africa - 2000 - 90'
Zola Maseko's - South Africa - 2004 - 94'
Izulu Lami
Madoda Ncayiyana - South Africa – 2008 - 90'
Oliver Schmitz - South Africa – 1987 - 104'
The Cradock Four
David Forbes - 2010 - 92'


Tribute to Nelson Mandela


Nelson Mandela: The Struggle is My Life
Lionel Ngakane - South Africa - 1985 - 45'
Clifford Bestall - South Africa - 2009 - 52'