Press Release Amakula Film Festival 2018

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7th March 2018

Amakula International Film Festival set for 14th – 17th March!


Venue: Kampala Film School – 14th & 15th and the Uganda Museum – 16th & 17th.

About #Amakula2018: This edition of the Festival is scheduled to take place in two separate venues; the first venue will be Kampala Film School – which will present a programme curated with the idea to address the students’ film culture in Uganda. The programme will include discussions, masterclasses and screening of short, student and documentary films that were selected from submission of in and out of the Golden Impala Award competition. For screening will be free to the public.

The second venue will be the Uganda Museum – which will present a programme that includes seminars and conference on topics affecting the Film industry today. The discussions will tackle film regulatory and distribution. The venue will also be a home to screening of feature films in a drive-in-cinema-setting where audiences will be watching in the comfort of their cars with silent headphones. For these evenings – the screenings will be at a fee of 10,000 UGX per head.

Awards: The Golden Impala Award aims to uplift and inspire film standards for local, regional and international filmmakers. This year’s Four Golden Impala Awards will be handed out to honor the Best International Feature Film, Best East Africa Short Film, Best International Documentary Film and the newly added Best East Africa Students Film.

The Jury: The 2018 Amakula International Film Festival Jury members are appointed by the festival committee. The eleventh edition will have 3 Jury member – Andrew Kaggwa (UG), Cristiano Civitillo (UG/Italy/German) and Lucky Lora Atwiine (UG). The Jury will review all the films – features, shorts and documentaries – that are in-competition and declare winners – presenting an expert commentary and a written decision signed by all the Jury members.

#Amakula2018 Film programme:

Feature Films screening:

Devil’s Chest (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Hassan Mageye

A true story about Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). A village woman has to fight for her freedom being forced to be the wife of rebel leader Joseph Kony, a man responsible for her husband’s and other people’s death.

Love Faces (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Usama Mukwaya

Sherry (Laura Kahunde) decides to breakup with her longtime love Joshua after a disagreement. The ruckus is intervened by Joshua’s best friend Salim (Patriq Nkakalukanyi) who wants them to make peace while Maria (Elizabeth Bwamimpeke), Sherry’s workmate also shows up to help her move out. When Maria and Salim are away, a burglar breaks into the house with Joshua and Sherry both in. Joshua (Moses Kiboneka Jr.) realizes after the incident that he still loves his woman and wants to do everything to take all that has happened back; only that Sherry has already made up her mind to leave.

Rain (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Daniel Mugerwa

RAIN is a drama film about a girl who holds on to HOPE irrespective of overwhelming tragedies that surround her. She is born in a humble village in Masaka, Uganda with a dream of becoming a shining music artist. However, this dream is short lived when Mr. Dj an event music selector takes advantage of her and engages her in unprotected sex resulting into early Pregnancy and HIV infection. It’s her perseverance and steadfast hope that keeps her alive and eventually becomes a very productive citizen when she decides to become a counselor and offer emotional support to those that are going through similar situations.

Vvolongoto Mu Mukwano (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Ttabu Wasswa

A married woman secretly falls in love with a “shamba boy”. When rumors spread across the village, her husband deploys a secret agent to spy on her. Finally, the spy catches them in the act and both narrowly escape. Now, the husband wants both of them dead. The village will become the battle ground.

The Forbidden (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Kizito Samuel

The Forbidden movie follows a story of a young girl Dian living with a single mother, she is a smart girl at school whose education is interrupted by lack of school payments, this stress pushes her to pressure her mother to unveil who her father was but the mother keeps on hiding the truth from Dian, on a task of discovering her father after her mother’s death, she gets hired to work as a maid at her boyfriend “Joseph’s” home where his father Ssendi rapes her, later after she is caught in a puzzled world when she gets to know that her and her boyfriend Joseph shared the same father who had already infected her with HIV through the sexual harassments, her father dies in a physical fight and she is left with a haunting memory of having been infected by the father she spent all her teenage life searching for.

King of Mask Actor (Not In Competition)

Director: Lee Yong-jin

The happening in one day of two actors who challenges to perform dramatic life acting.

Solon (Not In Competition)

Director: Clarissa Campolina

A tale about the emergence or re-emergence of the world, brought from the encounter of a devastated landscape and a mysterious creature. Solon inhabits this extremely arid and infertile space. Slowly, the creature begins a task of putting out the fire that dominates the environment and to nourish the earth. Water spurting from its body make the fire disappear, while colored smoke invade the space. The water becomes a nascent that flows from the ferrous soil. The landscape changes and the creature as well. The world is born. A woman is born.

Mohamed, The First Name (Not In Competition)

Director: Malika Zairi

“Mohamed is the most popular first name in the world. But, it is not always easy to carry it in the West. Mohamed, 10 years old boy, relates why he didn’t like his first name. His parents informed him that he was named after the messenger of Islam, Mohamed, which who spread a message of peace and love.”

Night Song (Not In Competition)

Director: Hyun-jung Lee

Film director hopeful Seungwoo takes off for Samnye to write his film scenario which he has been struggling on. He quickly befriends Heein whom he meets in Samnye. In a strange time and space, Heein’s form becomes both a source of inspiration and enormous chaos for Seungwoo.

The End of the Good Old Days (Not In Competition)

Director: Mehmet Basak

Year 1999. Humeyra, who is preparing for her university entrance exams, aims to follow in the footsteps of her elder sister, who is continuing her education abroad because of the headscarf ban. As for her mother – who is in the midst of a risky pregnancy – she desires her daughter to study at home. As for her father, who has used all of his available means to support his eldest – he is caught between supporting the dreams of his daughter and the reality of their situation. The girl’s grandmother, who has returned home to help Humeyra’s mother during the pregnancy, endeavors to resolve the tension. But will Humeyra be able to fulfill her dream?

Number 9

Director: Marius Bonfeu

Number 9 is a story about unknowing fans of a very famous football star Samuel Eto’o. The story is concrete evidence that soccer has in the past and still is the major role player in bringing people and countries together in celebration of the sport and it personalities.

Student Films Screening:

Joy (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Solomon Onita Jr.

A Nigerian woman living in America struggles to convince her traditionalist husband not to circumcise their ten-year-old daughter.

The Last Breath (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Jordan Braise

A poor Ugandan girl comes to terms with grief as she tries to protect her mother’s last breath contained in a red balloon.

Zzina (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Kirabo Joyce

A documentary film about a Ugandan female dancer who believes that through dancing and music, she can tell her story to the world.

Idi Amin’s Boat (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Grace Nabisenke

Mukasa, a new tourist boat-rider on Lake Victoria, discovers a terrifying secret when he learns of Idi Amin’s sunken boat on the shore of a deserted island and the untold treasures it hides. But is he brave enough to act on this when nothing is quite as it seems?

Mikono Salama (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Zagamba Junior

The story is about a husband left by his wife due to several disputes leaving behind her baby, the husband face challenges in take caring the baby and in handling everyday house chores within 12 hours he final realizes that he needs his wife home he decides to send a text message begging her to come back home and settle their disputes his wife forgives him and returns home to raise their baby as one happy family.

Short Films Screening:

Dem Dem! (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Christopher Rolin

A Senegalese fisherman finds a Belgian passport on a beach in Dakar and decides to use it. He soon crosses paths with N’Zibou, a wise man who measures the clouds and questions the man about his search for identity.

Jethro x Jethro (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Malcolm Bigyemo

Jethro x Jethro is a short meta-comedy made up of stories pitched by Ugandan film-makers trying to get funds for their projects from the Moderately Altruistic Non-Governmental Organisation (MANGO). From a sci-fi comedy about time travel, to a film about nothing; Jethro x Jethro shows what should have been a boring pitching session degenerating into absolute chaos.

Office Vacation (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Namanya Gerald

Office vacation is a hilarious story of two friends and workmates, Bwanika (Felix Bwanika) and Kanyomozi (Patriq Nkakalukanyi) who spend their time at office doing nothing but arranging dance competitions between themselves and amongst their colleagues. But is the boss really up for it?

Rehema (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Allan Manzi

A coming of age story about Rehema, a Muslim young woman that stands up to her family for the right to choose her suitor but nearly loses everything.

The Bad Mexican (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Loukman Ali

Youth unemployment remains a serious problem in many sub-Saharan African countries, including Uganda, Kenneth is a young Ugandan writer who has this one chance to get a job that will enable him to pay off a gangster loan shark (Moses) but his day doesn’t go exactly as planned, Moses won’t listen to any of that.

The Surrogate (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Achiro P. Olwoch

This is a story of myth and culture and the desire to be different and accepted in society. It is a story of a young woman who gets pregnant out of wedlock with a homosexual man in a culture that loathes the subject of either.

Wrong Connection (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

The Malagasy government discovers an unlikely revolutionary weapon, made of adulterated artisanal rum (toaka gasy) and water of Lake Anosy (the most polluted in the country) and decides to sell it to the highest bidder to revive the economy. By sheer chance, North Korea wins the auction, and upsets the world&#39s geopolitical balance. When CIA agent, Tina, arrives on the scene, a really zany investigation and Malagasy style spying spins out of control.

You Really Outdid Yourself Didn’t you, Fool (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Babili Maseko

Mandla Sithole (Olis Mavuso) is a young naive boxer who gets knocked out in the fourth round of an underground Prize fight; he is trying to fix his collapsing relationship with his pregnant girlfriend Mandisa (Tumi Malefo) at the same time trying to escape the sharp teeth of a vicious Gun touting loan shark Msunukanyoko (Luthuli Dlamini) who loaned him money to train for the fight.

Black Barbie (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Comfort Arthur

Black Barbie is a poetry animation that explores the filmmaker’s experience with skin bleaching growing up as a child.

Locheng’s Dream (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Opacho Daniel Comboni

Lochen’s dream is getting educated but like many Karamajong parents, her father does not believe in schooling daughters given that; educated girls do not fetch dowry. Will Lochen’s love for school help change his mind? Lochen’s Dream is a product of Kotido based filmmakers developed during the Voice of Karamoja (VOKF) training project conducted by Native Travel Festival with a view of empowering Karamoja based filmmaking aspirants with the skills and tools to tell stories from a Karamojong perspective.

No Good Turn (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Udoka Oyeka

A gruesome Boko Haram terrorist attack has destroyed the police station and the market of a small town in Northern Nigeria. In charge of an overcrowded emergency unit of a rundown hospital, Dr. Gbenga and his staff are doing all they can to help the victims, when a young man suspected to be one of the terrorists is brought in. The town’s Chief of Police demands immediate jungle justice but Gbenga must keep everyone’s values in check especially his own.

Opeyemi (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Alvan Obichi

A slumdog with dreams of becoming a pilot learns through hardship the virtue of gratitude.

Renege (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Tobi Ogunwande

Renege is a story about a young brainwashed suicide bomber who decided to go against his original planned assignment.

Strength of a Karamajong Woman (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Agnes Etadu

Lomoe Rose is a single Karamojong mother who, after conflicting with her husband returns to her father’s house. She ventures into local brewing (Ebutia) to support her children. But will Ebutia fill her husband’s shoes? The film is a product of Kotido based filmmakers developed during the Voice of Karamoja (VOKF), training project conducted by Native Travel Festival with a view of empowering Karamoja based filmmaking aspirants with the skills and tools to tell stories from a Karamojong perspective.

Documentary Films screening:

A Hidden Gem (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Directors: Anna Bolster and Laura Schnurre

The little pottery on the missionary station in Mokono is a hidden gem for the world, but well-known in Uganda. When she retired the dedicated pottery artist Carola from Austria brought the pottery to life. It is a place of hope for many young Ugandans as it is one of the few vocational trainings in the country. And it has become a huge success, not only has the pottery gained a name in the art world, it has encouraged young Ugandans to express themselves.

Arthur (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Ndawula Jorda

This film is about the life of Arthur, his one of the few unique people in Uganda who’s surrounded with a world of curiosity. Kisitu is lives in Kampala, he’s a painter and a dancer. He uses his creative mind to create his own style of art, he makes lights out of glass bottles that are thrown as trash. He also decorates the bottles with different designs to create mood. What others see as trash, its gold to him. Adding on his artistic mind Kisitu gives back to the community through managing an orphanage, helping different children in slums of Katanga. He created his own company. Arthur is also good at dancing and photography.  Through my time of research I’m looking more into Arthur’s life clearly to make a documentary with an appealing narrative for the audience to see and get inspired by his world.

Accra Power (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Directors: Sandra and Andre

Accra Power provides an eclectic mix of perceptions of power in one of many thriving urban settings Africa’s. It outlines creative and artistic strategies of young Ghanaians situated at the crossroads of tradition and various belief systems, high technological and economic growth, infrastructural deficits and current energy crisis.

Master and the Movie Doctor (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

How do kung-fu punches, copyright infringement and clothes pegs lead to the galvanization of the Ugandan film industry? VJ Sammy, the Movie Doctor, and VJ Sammy, the Master, shows us how VJ Ronnie translates pop films from Korean kung-fu punches into Ugandan language and popular culture with a shrewd combination of drama, shacks and clothes pegs to hundreds of audience members in the underbelly of Kampala. The Movie Doctor investigates the galvanization of Uganda’s cinema through the eyes of the cultural and linguistic interpreter, VJ Ronnie.

RWANDArt (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Sarine Arslanian

Rwandan creative entrepreneurs are leaving preconceived beliefs behind and unleashing their artistic potential. They are the new face of Rwanda; a country which has beautifully risen from the ashes and is moving forward without forgetting its essence and traditions. RWANDArt captures this phenomenon, expressing itself through dance, music, fashion and art, with young passionate artists sharing their stories, dreams, and ambitions. More and more, they are becoming a source of inspiration, redefining cultural boundaries and showing hope and humanity.

Somebody Clap for Me (In Competition for the Golden Impala Award)

Director: Luciana Ceccatto Farah

Somebody Clap for Me, by Brazilian director Luciana Farah, provides a fascinating window into life in contemporary Uganda that links the country’s oral tradition to its 21st century culture of slam poetry and hip-hop. This unconventional film, made with the support of Maisha Film Lab, chronicles the resurfacing of village bonfire traditions in an urban setting, introducing the audience to key members of Kampala-based grassroots poetry collectives. These eclectic individual portraits combine to form a vision of a country trying to shed its past and build a more democratic reality, despite the conservative forces latching on to power.

Kandia (Voices) (Not in Competition)

Director: Jean Hamado Tiemtore

In the Bambara language of Burkina Faso, the term Kandia, composed by the words KAN (voice) and DIA (beauty), means the beautiful voice, but also the beauty that the voice produces. In the heart of Lecce in Puglia, a multicutural chorus sing its deep humanity, singing in italian, tamil, swahili. A real example of integration and melting among peoples. Our desire through this project is to show a type of relationship among “migrant” and “autochtonous” different from that proposed by the media beyond the polarizing and criminalizing way. Kandia is an example of cohabitation and concrete interaction, a simple action, human, in which one man equal one voice.

History: Amakula International Film Festival is Uganda’s oldest independent film festival that aims to contribute to a vibrant local film industry, by broadening access to and developing audiences for quality African film production; inspiring local film makers to produce quality local films based on own stories; facilitating, presenting and promoting local film productions and distribution; and offering a professional networking platform for the film making community in East Africa and beyond.

For more information contact Kasule Douglas ‘Benda’ (standing in for Philip Masembe) Media Coordinator at Bayimba Cultural Foundation: or 0414 591670 / 0751 960602.

The Amakula International Film Festival is presented by Bayimba Cultural Foundation in partnership with The DOEN Foundation, Africalia, Kampala Film School and the Uganda Museum.