Don’t miss provocative Mandela documentary
23 Jul 2014
Review: Nelson Mandela:
The Myth and Me
Durban international film Festival
IT’S a sad indictment that not a single ANC government representative was willing to be interviewed for Khalo Matabane’s provocative new documentary, Nelson Mandela: The Myth and Me, which had its world premiere at the Durban International Film Festival on July 18.
Speaking after the screening, Matabane revealed that it was easier to get the likes of former United States secretary of state Colin Powell and the Dalai Lama to speak on camera than Cyril Ramaphosa.
In the film, both men share their thoughts on former president Nelson Mandela, as do Ronnie Kasrils, Albie Sachs and Ariel Dorfman.
There are also powerful contributions from ordinary South Africans, many of whom are disillusioned with the lack of real change in South Africa. Some are militant in their views that those who benefited under apartheid should be punished.
As for Matabane himself, he is unsure how he really feels about Mandela. As a child he viewed him as a mythical superhero who would trample the enemies of the people underfoot, but later he found himself wondering why Mandela and the ANC were so willing to embrace reconciliation and to bend the founding principles of the liberation movement.
Through his own feelings and the thoughts of his subjects, he interrogates the nature of freedom in the Rainbow Nation today, and poses the question of who has benefited the most during the past two decades.
Matabane doesn’t try and provide any answers, but his film is both thought-provoking and challenging. See it if you can.
**** Estelle Sinkins
• Nelson Mandela: The Myth and Me is at Ster-Kinekor Musgrave at 6.30 pm on Sunday.
THE 35th edition of the Durban International Film Festival (DIFF) runs until Sunday with over 250 screenings of cutting-edge cinema from around the world, with a special focus on films from South Africa and Africa. The largest of southern Africa’s film festivals, and the most important film festival in Africa, DIFF has a film competition component and also presents screenings in township areas. For more information, phone 031 260 2506 or visit www.durbanfilmfest.co.za