Yesterday we were invited to an early preview of a new film, ‘Africa United’. The UK-South Africa-Rwanda co-production which was filmed across three countries portrays a heartfelt story of three children and their friends on a journey across seven African countries to the opening ceremony of the football World Cup in Johannesburg.
Director Debs Gardner-Paterson and Rhidian Brook, the production screenwriter, have put together an enchanting story that touches on many important issues that affect children across Africa. Two of the lead characters are AIDS orphans and the friends they make along the way include a child soldier and a child in prostitution. Brook purposefully chooses to not dwell on each of these issues and avoids too much detail. As a result, the film is heartfelt and its comedic characters make the film enjoyable and engaging while enabling viewers to learn about some of the challenges that are impeding development in Africa.
Ultimately, ‘Africa United’ is about people having hope and following their dreams. We highly recommend that everyone go and watch the film when it comes out in cinemas on the 22nd of October 2010.
Click here to watch a trailer of the film.
‘Africa United’ serves as a good platform for discussion about some of the issues raised in the film including health, education and children in conflict. For those looking for more information, the Damaris Trust has created a number of free resources that enable community groups and schools to explore many of the themes further. You can access these resources here.