Woman Power at ttff/12
While the Cannes International Film Festival has been heavily criticised for its absence of female directors, the trinidad+tobago film festival is pleased to be showcasing the works of over 35 female directors at ttff/12. These documentaries and narrative features will explore a range of themes, styles and subject matters by women in the Caribbean, India, Africa and Latin America.
Narratives: Wuthering Heights by Andrea Arnold is an intensely visceral film, a powerful alembic of one of the most beloved romantic works in literature, making the case that Heathcliff was a black former slave. The Cuban film Una Noche, by Lucy Mulloy won multiple awards at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival. Guadeloupian filmmaker Marriette Monpierre's Elza simmers with intrigue and illicit scandal; while Leticia Tonos's film from the Dominican Republic, La Hija Natural, is a deeply moving film exploring a father-daughter relationship. St Lucia-born director and producer Michelle Serieux and co-founder of the guerilla style New Caribbean Cinema Collective has co-produced two of the films from the Ring Di Alarm collection. From the T&T contingent, Domestic Disturbance by self-taught artist and filmmaker Ayesha Jordan, examines the life of a depressed wife seeking an end to her abusive marriage. Other noteworthy films include One Good Deed by Juliette McCawley, Tickle Me Rich by Sonja Dumas and La Gaita by Janine Fung.
Documentaries: Award-winning filmmaker Christy Garland's The Bastard Sings the Sweetest Song is a sensitive and profound, tragic and life-affirming film about Guyanese family, and a son's flawed but brave attempts to care for his mother. Nisha Pahuja of India/Canada won the Best Documentary Feature Film Award at Tribeca Film Festival with The World Before Her — a thoughtful, eye-opening documentary which takes an unprecedented look inside the worlds of beauty pageants and the military, brilliantly dramatising the tensions between old and new India, and the struggles of Indian women to determine their own destiny. Other noteworthy films include Lisa Wickam's Forward Home, a documentary shot in nine countries revealing the economic power of the people of the Caribbean diaspora living in global cities, and the significance of their contribution to their homeland, both as travellers and entrepreneurs.
LGBT Films: Among the films, three focus on the issues of homophobia and gender issues. Katherine Fairfax Wright and Malika Zouhali-Worrall's Call Me Kuchu, is a documentary about the persecution of homosexuals, lesbians and transgenders in Uganda. Selena Blake's groundbreaking documentary, Taboo Yardies goes beyond the headlines to look at life for Jamaica's LGBT community, and the origins of the country's attitudes towards homosexuality. From the UK, Campbell X's Stud Life, is a dramatic feature is a celebration of modern, multicultural London, and a romantic comedy with both a difference and universal resonance.
This is just a sample of of the 120+ new feature-length and short films showing at this year's ttff. Other countries represented include Trinidad and Tobago, the Caribbean and its diaspora, Latin American countries in the Caribbean Basin and India
The seventh annual trinidad+tobago film festival (ttff) takes place from September 19 to October 2. Screenings will take place at MovieTowne (PoS and Tobago), the Little Carib Theatre and other venues throughout both islands. Tickets are $25 at MovieTowne and the Little Carib and available at the time of screenings and in advance at the box office. All other screenings are free.
The trinidad+tobago film festival is held annually in September and is presented by Flow, given leading sponsorship by RBC Royal Bank and bpTT, and supported by the Trinidad and Tobago Film Company, the National Gas Company, the Ministry of Arts and Multiculturalism and Copa Airlines.
See Pages 8 and 9