May 1, 2015

The 2015 New York African Film Festival’s kicks off its 22nd edition May 1 with a documentary and talks with stars and will runs through May 25, bringing a wealth of ways to engage with the African Diaspora through eclectic African films from the continent and diaspora, and activities. Some of the films offer the “who’s who,” from the continent’s burgeoning film industry. Other events include talks, a street festival and an art exhibit by photographer Fabrice Monteiro, which will be displayed at the Film Society of Lincoln Center through May 17.

These are some of the films we’re excited about:

Winter of Discontent This is the story of two people- activist Amr Walced and journalist Farah Youssef-, that offers a raw behind the scene look at events that took place at Cairo’s Tahrir Square in 2011 and the lives of these people as it unfolded. Independent film maker Ibrahim El Batout takes us on a journey as we watch their lives unfold in parallel to Egyptian President Mubarak’s resignation from power.

Afripedia. A five-part documentary that explores some of the continent’s urban cultures through the creative minds- musicians, artists, designers- that are producing, reimagining, and revolutionizing the cultural scenes in some of African’s popular cities. The documentary was filmed in Angola, Ghana, Kenya, Senegal and South Africa.

Timbuku. A sprawling 97 minutes look at life on the front lines of the war against terrorism in Africa and its effects on civilians, especially women.

You Laugh But It’s True. This is a chance to get to know South African transplant Trevor Noah before he takes the rein in August as the new host of American most watched fake news show, The Daily Show. In this comic relief, we get to hear how he leverage his interracial background, as an outsider who figured a way to fit in with everyone through his comedy.

Head Gone. A hilarious feature by Nigerian film maker Dare Fasasi explores the fine line between sanity and insanity.

Soko Sonko by Ekwa Msangi. In this short film, a well-intended father discovers women’s daily duties aren’t as easy as they seems when he took his daughter to the market to get her hair done.

Cholo by Muzna Almusafer. This is the story of two siblings- step brothers from same mother- one dark skinned, the other light skinned, who, despite how the world sees them, decides to experience the world through one race lens.

Surrender. The issues of homosexuality in Africa is boldly examined in this film by Celine Gilbert that looks at the life of a Tanzanian man caught between his family’s expectation of his role as a family man and his desire for another man.

Stories of Our Lives explores the lives of the LGBT community in Kenya

This year, there’s a focus on WOMEN’S ISSUES

Burkina, All About Women, A short film by director Nicole Mackinlay, dare to counter stereotypes by shinning light at the professional lives of some women in Burkina Faso.

Mossane. In this 105 minutes feature film, two fundamental issues affecting women and girls on the continent- early child marriage and women’s and girl’s empowerments -are tactfully explored by telling the story of a 14 year-old girl from rural Senegalese village who defies her parents’ wishes and chooses love over tradition by refusing to marry a wealthy man she was bestowed to.

Mind of a Chef. A culinary journey through West Africa and its influence on American cuisine.

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