Feb 4 to Mar 4, 2021 · Trailer
Presenting an array of offerings that capture “Africanness” in its myriad iterations and manifestations, NYAFF spotlights the global Black community’s influence on our cultural pasts, present, and futures. Full Statement
In response to the execution of activist Marielle Franco, the 2018 elections in Brazil became one of the biggest political upheavals led by Black women the country has ever seen, with candidacies in all states.
In Makoko, the largest slum on water in Nigeria, Mrs. F. sets out to unite women by staging a play called Hear Word, an empowerment project based on true stories.
As a child, Toussaint Louverture is marked forever when he sees his father, an old slave, judged unproductive and thrown into the harbor. As an adult and a free man, Louverture leads the slave revolt that results in the independence of Haiti.
Set in Haiti five years after the devastating 2010 earthquake, Guetty Felin's magical realist tale avoids the kinds of images of the disaster that saturated screens around the world.
In the Eye of the Spiral details an artistic and philosophical movement born in Haiti called Spiralism, which has spread across the arts, touching upon spirituality and even politics.
Real Maravilloso (RM) is Marvelous Realism: it is a way of life in Cuba, when the possibilities of being are open to the unexpected and magical existence.
When their Port-au-Prince villa is severely damaged in the devastating 2010 earthquake, a wealthy couple must renovate the house immediately or have it demolished.
On New Year's Eve, two best friends try to score a huge deal, dodge a gangster and his violent minions, get the girl, and ultimately save their lives.
At the outbreak of the Second Congo War, with only each other to rely on, two Rwandan soldiers embark on an odyssey through one of the most beautiful, yet treacherous forests on earth, faced with the depths of their own war-torn souls.
A subtle study of cultural identity following a graceful young woman of Haitian descent who works as a fashion model and actress in cosmopolitan Paris.
A restless girl meets a spirit who gives her pure water. Her family devours the delicious water until they begin to suspect more than the origin of its taste.
A unique, strong, disciplined and energetic woman, Vivianne Gauthier, choreographer and dance teacher led her life as she pleased, marking the cultural history of her country, Haiti.
In a cotton-farming village in Sudan, 15-year-old Nafisa has a crush on Babiker, but her parents have arranged her marriage to Nadir, a young Sudanese businessman living abroad.
The Prophetess is a story of overcoming struggle through gumption and sisterhood. Furaha and Venantie have survived physical and psychological traumas we could never imagine.
Solo is Malagasy, Parisian and homosexual. In order to fulfill the last wishes of his deceased partner, Solo returns to Madagascar to meet with his estranged “in-laws”.
Nigerien filmmaker Amina Weira reveals the impacts of decades-long uranium extraction in her hometown of Arlit by focusing her lens on her father as recalls his 35 years in mining.
Mane tells the stories of two rebellious Senegalese women pursuing their passions in the male-dominated spheres of rap music and wrestling with irrepressible spirit and a shared sense of self-determination.
The expansive influence of under-celebrated legend Weldon Irvine’s socio-culturally evocative work is lovingly examined through rare archival footage and intimate interviews with his contemporaries, collaborators and family.
Inspired by how a stranger’s generosity enabled her to attend university, Ida Puliwa created a charitable foundation in Malawi, naming it Othakarhaka which means “passing on the kindness.”
Adorned in intricately woven white garments as she looks upon an expansive body of water, a woman conveys her experience of renewal by detailing her shedding of an exploitative past and embracing her powerful new awareness of self and legacy.r
Inspired by the director’s own experience, Mthunzi explores the complex social fabric of South Africa.
The first episode in a four part documentary series on Black Consciousness as defined by late South African activist Bantu Stephen Biko introduces us to seven Johannesburg millennials as they dissect and analyse the ideology from their varied points of view.
In the South African township of Khayelitsha, 18-year-old Avuyile reflects on how his passion for bicycles helped him turn away from a path of violence and drugs.
Two friends who met in film school and co-founded the San Francisco based independent comic book company Fracture Comics share their determination to create space for themselves.
In the aftermath of Haiti’s devastating 2010 earthquake, a young man questions failed relief efforts, seeks out the stories of survivors, is driven to find his ancestral roots, and unearths Ayiti’s troubled but inspiring history.
For two decades, the late Awudu Tijani voluntarily took on the arduous task of directing traffic in some of Accra’s most knotty and unmonitored intersections.
Families, officers, judges, and advocates unite as unlikely allies confronting over-policing and mass incarceration of youth in Richmond, Virginia.
A meditation on migration, loss of language, and the transcendence of reimagined forms of communication. Through her relationship with her grandmothers, filmmaker Abul Ajak explores how cultural identities are not fixed, but always in transition.
When disputed presidential elections spur violence against Togo’s citizens in 2005, Joy, a man whose wife and father were killed in the attacks, flees the country.
Drawing parallels between Théodore Géricault’s evocative 1819 painting Raft of Medusa and the contemporary stories of Africans who endured grueling journeys towards the west, this short considers the role of colonialism in migration.
This documentary showcases the spectacular movements of Ethiopia’s Circus Debere Berhan just as much as the country’s sublime landscapes.
In this experimental short five humans are born from the earth’s surface into a scorching desert. A sinister crow atop a lone tree draws their attention to a seat beneath it, instantly stirring up a violent power struggle.
In this mediation on womanhood, Haitian actress Katiana Milfort provides a moving voiceover detailing her experiences while she poetically acts out her story in the setting of a beach.
In this telling of the heroic story of Lwanda Magere, a superhuman warrior with skin of stone and the strength of ten men, a Kenyan folk tale traditionally passed down through oral traditions is preserved through animation
In this experimental documentary-essay, filmmaker Léwuga Benson assembles and alters archival footage and recordings to provocatively reiterate a history of violent oppression and surveillance of Black people.
Combining movement with documentary, The Circle is a bold and expressive portrait of David and Sanchez, two teenage brothers living in an East London housing project.
Rahma, an Eritrean migrant, contends with feelings of isolation and disconnect while raising four young children in Melbourne’s inner suburbs.
When a family loses its matriarch, each member must come to terms with her absence.
In this arresting cinepoem, a young filmmaker inhabits an unsettled space between Cuba and Mozambique as her aging father recalls filming the revolution and how his vision of independence was at odds with dominating ideologies.
In 2005, Gambian dictator Yahya Jammeh murdered 56 West African migrants out of fear they were mercenaries intending to overthrow him. Isaac Mensah, one of the victim's sons, shares the emotional toll of this atrocity and his quest for answers.
Three generations in a Haitian family of men are preoccupied with their individual hopes and struggles.
With nuance and sensitivity, this film examines intergenerational effects of limiting ideas about Black masculinity.
In her 10 year quest to reconstruct the past of a father she barely knew and reclaim his place in Niger’s history, Abdoulaye Mamani’s daughter uncovers his lifelong commitment to the independence of his country.
In this coming of age tale set in a small coastal African village, young Jaki and his best friends plan to foil the construction of a mausoleum that threatens to destroy their neighborhood.
An examination of South Africa’s post-apartheid narrative from the early days of liberation to an increasingly fractured contemporary society still invested in the vital culture of resistance.
Four urban sports enthusiasts from Nantes form RoulàDakar, a collective developing interest in this adventurous lifestyle far beyond French borders. In Senegal, they bond with local youth and leave behind the country’s first BMX track.
Sudanese-American artists gather across the US to perform in support of Sudan’s 2019 revolution. While reflecting on issues of identity and belonging, they grapple with uncertainties about Sudan’s future from afar.
Maasai Remix follows three Maasai individuals who—in the United Nations, a Tanzanian village, an American university—confront challenges to their community by drawing strength from traditions, modifying them when necessary, and melding them with new resources.
When confronted with the looming threats of industrial fishing, globalization, and foreign factories, how will southern Senegal’s artisanal fishing community continue to resist and maintain its ability to protect regional gastronomic traditions and cultures?
An immersive look at the daily life and political concerns of Serge Bamabara, aka Smockey: rapper, activist and co-founder of Balai Citoyen, a powerful force in Burkina Faso’s resistance against the dictatorship of Blaise Compaoré.
This Nigerian thriller follows Aisha, a Fulani milkmaid, as she confronts the religious extremists who’ve kidnapped her sister.
Set in 1973, Our Lady of the Nile draws us into the lives of Rwandan teenagers at an elite boarding school as a growing inferno engulfs their nation.
Malian director Hawa Aliou N'Diaye believes that she is possessed by a jinn. In this documentary, she interviews other women who share her experience.
An 80-year-old widow’s careful plans for death are disrupted by the news that her village will soon be resettled to make room for a dam.
Inspired by the memory and spirit of Winnie Mandela, Joko Ya Hao is a celebration of the power of women.
When an African Pentecostal pastor in London undergoes a life-changing event, she questions everything she believes in.
In Black Lady Goddess, a satirical Afrofuturistic series set in the year 2040, humans have discovered that God is a Black woman, and reparations of $455,000 have been issued to each person of African descent. In this brave new world, a young activist, Ifeoma Johnson, comes into her own.
Khanya and Sandiswa’s father leaves them in his car outside the local horse racing tracks under strict instructions to stay put. Khanya gets her period and decides to enter the arena. When she is confronted by her father, the true confines of their delicate relationship come to light.
When a salacious tape threatens a woman’s marriage, an unexpected encounter offers her a door she must choose to open or close.
Freely inspired by a 1927 letter from American sociologist and Pan-Africanist W.E.B. Du Bois to the American embassy in Brazil, this colorful film takes us back to a time when it was impossible for African Americans to travel to Brazil and reminds us of the inequality still faced by the Black inhabitants of that country.
Using found footage with selected images and text from The Marshall Family Collection at Harvard University’s Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, A New England Document reconstructs the impulse of two ethnographers’ photographic encounters in the Kalahari Desert in Namibia from a reparative perspective.
In 14th-century Mali, an ambitious young royal named Mansa Musa ascended the throne of the richest kingdom in human history. Sun of the Soil follows Malian artist Abdou Ouologuem on a journey to discover the truth behind the legendary African king. Abdou and Musa’s arcs weave together, punctuated by performances that illustrate key moments in Musa’s reign.
1000 Songs features 83-year-old Brooklyn musician and R&B singer Ricky Rose. Ricky has been playing music for 70 years, and despite never making it to the big leagues, his passion for performing live has never dimmed.
Keon, a young Black photographer, embarks on a journey with his brothers Amiri and Dre to acquire a new camera to complete his art school admission portfolio. Along the way, the three of them negotiate obstacles and dangers, confronting an environment intent on policing their bodies and expression.
In Dakar, a few days before the feast of Tabaski, a painter shuts himself away in his studio to work on the theme of the ritual sacrifice of the ram.
A misunderstanding between three teenagers and a troubled man escalates to a point of no return.
While making dinner one night, an immigrant contemplates his complicated feelings toward his girlfriend back home.
During a routine traffic stop, a young motorist faces the challenge of driving while Black.
Ben and Sharon work in the same building. One evening, on their way out, they are trapped together in a malfunctioning elevator.
Shot in Dakar with the participation of leading Senegalese musicians, poets, and graffiti artists, ALGO-RHYTHM probes the rise in the algorithmic management of daily life and the insidious threats it poses to human rights and agency.
Tiga, a farmer in Burkina Faso, is working in the bush when he hears a woman shouting for help.
A Burkinabé woman wants to send her daughter to school despite her family's resistance.
When Djénéba returns from the city where she has been visiting her cousin, she brings her husband, Konaté, a wonderful gift, a condom. Konaté is furious and refuses to change his habits. Djénéba, well aware of the effects of AIDS, refuses to give in.
A beautiful noble Senegalese woman arrives one day in Ouagadougou carrying with her remarkable seductive powers, which creates chaos throughout the capital.
A young Spanish woman goes to Morocco on a journey of self-discovery after finding a secret about her roots in one of her late mother’s letters.
In the wake of Burkina Faso’s 2014 uprising, the young poet Bikontine travels along the country’s only rail line, meeting his fellow citizens.
Selam is determined to change her family’s fate through her passion for running. An international race offers her a chance to achieve her dream.
In Pascal Aka’s Afro-noir, a crime family in post-independence Ghana has to clean up their act before the government shuts down their lounge.
A mystical encounter between two Black women in São Paolo, Brazil, takes them on a journey through time and their intertwined histories.
Using film clips, interviews, and rare vintage footage, this 1983 documentary recalls the first 20 years of sub-Saharan Africa’s new auteur cinema.
FilmAfrica 2021 at BAM (Online)
"Anger in the Wind," by Amina Weira at Maysles Virtual Cinema
NYAFF Free Talk:Visions of Africa
Digital Art Exhibition:Prose in Place