21 July 2017
For the ‘Celebrating Africa’ edition, the Film Fest organised by the Reggae University will include, in addition to the usual film releases about Jamaica and the world of reggae, two projections specially focused on the African continent.
On the one hand, the screenings on 13th August of the episode of ‘FONKO’ on Nigeria (Sweden 2013-2014) and the incredible musical explosion of the new afrobeat sounds in the land of Fela Kuti (his son Seun Kuti will be on the Main Stage the same night).
On the other hand, on Thursday 17th the Film Fest includes the national premiere of ‘Agadez. The Music and the Rebellion’ (2010, Niger). Through the story of the young guitarist Bombino, who has become a cult musician in Niger and will perform at the Lion Stage that night, the film will unveil the reality of the nomadic Tuareg of the Sahara desert. Rebels proud of their independence, who fight to protect their freedom and culture.
From Africa we will travel to Jamaica. Over there, long before ska, rocksteady, reggae and dancehall itself, there was mento. A rhythm that emerged from the fusion of African and European music, which also gave rise to a new dance style. ‘Pimento and Hot Pepper – The Mento Story’ (2016, JA / USA), addresses the evolution this music style has undergone since the last decades of the nineteenth century. A film that includes video clips recorded in the 50’s and 60’s and interviews with world-renowned experts and artists such as Toots Hibbert, who will be performing alongside the Maytals that same night on the Main Stage.
Produced and directed by the French Stéphane Delphin, ‘Soul Rebels. The Untold Story of Dancehall Music’, here in its world premiere will analyse through different testimonies the connections between the music of old cults of African origin, such as the Pocomania or Revival, with the dancehall style.
The Rototom Sunsplash audience will also enjoy the screening of ‘Rockers’ (1978, Jamaica) coinciding with the 40th anniversary of the production of this classic that has become a cult film for the genre’s lovers. Among the characters in this plot of fiction are artists such as Burning Spear, Bunny Wailer, Jacob Miller and Gregory Isaacs.
The Rototom will be also present in two films programmed at the Film Fest. Firstly, in the world premiere of the documentary ‘Wake up! What would you do to change the world?’ (2017, Spain), directed by Ángel Loza, winner of a Goya Award, and produced by The White Lion Films. Filmed entirely during the 2011 edition of the festival, it will be adapted for people with visual and hearing disabilities, thanks to the support of the ONCE Foundation. And secondly, in the re-edition of the documentary ‘More than Twenty – Reloaded’, directed by Tommaso d’Elia and Silvia Bonanni, which focuses on the history of the Rototom.