The African Diaspora International Film Festival (ADIFF) celebrates its 26th anniversary in New York City, with a total of 61 films from 40 countries including 27 World, US and NY Premieres. Screenings will be held in five venues in Manhattan: Teachers College, Columbia University, Cinema Village, Riverside Church, The Dwyer Cultural Center and MIST Harlem.
Some titles come directly from important national and international film festivals such as Sundance, the Tribeca Film Festival, the Pan African Film Festival, FESPACO, Cannes, Slamdance and Berlinale. Some of the films celebrate the contribution of men and women who have resisted and succeeded in affecting major changes in society. Films featuring Miriam Makeba, Sandra Bland, C.L.R. James, Errol Barrow, and Nobel Prize winners Dr. Denis Mukwege, Kofi Annan and Toni Morrison are part of the ADIFF 2018 line-up.
Opening Night film Timeless: A Virgin Island Love Story travels in time from 19th Century Ghana to the modern day Caribbean. It is the story of Ajuwa, a Ghanaian warrior, who loses her soulmate to the slave trade; their souls reunite in contemporary US Virgin Islands.
Closing Night film Muslimah’s Guide to Marriage is a comedy of manners about Muslimah Muhammad, a twenty-something African-American orthodox Muslim woman who lives in Inglewood, CA and has seven days and fourteen hours left in her Iddah (Muslim separation) before she will officially be divorced from her cheating husband.
OTHER HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE THE PREMIERE SCREENINGS:
*Harlem Legacy by Shushana Dubreil and Genesis Tuyuc (World Premiere, USA, 2018, 26mins).
A film that follows two middle schoolers from P.S 161 Pedro Albizu Campos Middle School, who defy both academic barriers and racial stereotypes through the “rigorous academic sport of debate”.
*Freedom for the Wolf by Rupert Russell (NY Premiere, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Kuwait, Tunisia, Usa, 2017, 89mins). Democracy is in crisis. A new generation of elected leaders are dismantling freedom and democracy as we know it. Filmed over three years in five countries, Freedom for the Wolf is an epic investigation into this new regime of illiberal democracy.
*Kinshasa Makambo by Dieudo Hamadi (Democratic Republic of Congo, France, Germany, Norway, Qatar, Switzerland, 2018, 75 mins). Follows young activists who fight for change in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
*Kofi Annan’s Suspended Dream by Vasselin Pascal (France, Ghana, USA, 2018, 52mins). Two times UN Secretary-General, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Kofi Annan talks about himself in an exclusive interview.
*Minga and the Broken Spoon by Clay Edou (Cameroun, 2017, 80mins). A charming animation for the entire family, this African fable tells the story of Minga, an orphaned girl living with her stepmother Mami Kaba and her stepsister Abena.
*Black Mexicans / La Negrada by Jorge Perez Solano (Mexico, 2017, 100mins). Black Mexicans / La Negrada is the first Mexican feature film about the Afro-Mexican community, filmed entirely with people from different towns around the Costa Chica in Oaxaca.
*El Jaida by Selma Baccar (Tunisia, 2017, 104mins). Eight months before the Independence of Tunisia, four women meet at a prison for women called Dar Joued.
*No Shade by Clare Anyiam-Osigwe (UK, 2018, 104mins). Told through the prism of love, relationships, dating and marriage, No Shade provides a raw perspective on the issue of colorism.
*Shaihu Umar by Adamu Halilu (Nigeria, 1976, 142mins). Newly restored copy. Set in northern Nigeria towards the end of the 19th century, Shaihu Umar starts with a discussion between Islamic students and their renowned teacher, the wise man Shaihu Umar.
*A Day for Women (Youm Lel Setat) by Kamla Abu Zeki (Egypt, 2016, 110mins). A new swimming pool opens in a poor Cairo district, with the announcement that Sundays are reserved for women.
*They Had a Dream (Le Rêve Français) by Christian Faure (France, 2017, 2x90mins). They had a dream tells a story based on reality. It is both a social and a fictional saga, exploring the interconnected lives of two Guadeloupian families to reveal hidden and obscure aspects of French society.
*Ellen: The Ellen Pakkies Story by Selma Baccar (Netherlands, Poland, South Africa, 2018, 123mins). Based on true events, Ellen tells of the troubled relationship between a mother and her drug-addicted son – a relationship that will eventually drive her to the edge and lead to his murder.
*Last Life AKA Rise Again by Michael Phillip Edwards (USA, 2018, 82mins). The story of three American spirits as they inhabit 16 different characters moving through America’s racial history from the birth of the nation to the present.
*Singleville by Mary McCallum (USA, 2018, 73mins). Singledom sucks for three feisty ladies with stories to tell and male egos to skewer in this raucously funny mockumentary that boasts an all-female cast.