IIFF 2018 – An inspiring festival
Under the theme Reach Out!, the 17th edition of the International Images Film Festival (IIFF) took place during the last week of August. The IIFF team made sure that no one was left behind by holding screenings in the central business district as well as selected high density suburbs across Harare.
Films by 33 filmmakers from across the globe were exhibited. International directors invited as guests whose productions were screened included: Ms Mpho Ramathuthu (She is King), Lulu Keating (Snake Hips Lulu), Luciana Farah (Somebody Clap for Me), while local directors Tafadzwa Chiriga (Bhizautare raArthur), Sizakele Mukwedini (Mukanya) and Thomas Muziyirwa (Making Ends Meet). Constructive conversations around the films was a highlight across the venues, increasing the IIFF's great impact and relevance.
The programme portrayed the struggles that women face and how this can be costly for their children, families and communities. The IIFF team made a deliberate effort to show films that focused on violence against women and girls during the community outreach programme with the goal of ending this problem. In recent times there has been increased violations of women’s rights in Zimbabwe, particularly amongst the economically disadvantaged.
The community outreach programme, held in Mufakose, Epworth and Highfield, in particular saw audiences from diverse communities engaging in the lively dialogue sessions held after each screening, during which the audiences were given a chance to relate film content to their lived experiences thus providing a space for them propose solutions to recurring challenges that most communities face. The community outreach programme focused on films that narrate experiences of women, children and men with violence against women.
As stated by Tsitsi Dangarembga in her 1988 seminal novel NERVOUS CONDITIONS: ‘This business of womanhood is a heavy burden. And these days it is worse, with the poverty of blackness on one side and the weight of womanhood on the other’. In this context, the goal of this programming was to contribute to ending violence against women and girls by making uncomfortable conversations comfortable, in response to the escalating statistics in the country, especially amongst the economically disadvantaged, where it has been noted that the challenges to women's wellbeing and to ability to enjoy their rights has increased due to Zimbabwe's economic crisis.
Now, sleeves are already rolled up again as the IIFF team prepares for the 18th edition of the International Images Film Festival (IIFF) this time next year.
If it's good, it's at IIFF!!