Compétition internationale
42th edition
20>29 november 2020, Nantes
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I Am Not a Witch
(I Am Not a Witch)

by Rungano NYONI

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I am not a witch” is the title of the film but also a sentence never uttered by Shula, played by the young Margaret Mulubwa in her first screen role. A nine-year-old orphan, she is accused of sorcery by the local opinion, with the complicit consent of a woman police officer. The child’s wistful silence is the epicentre of a satire on the segregation of young girls and old women without family protection in some African countries. The fable authored by Rungano Nyoni reveals the mechanisms of a collective madness whose outcome is an anachronistic subservience. If the absurd but unusual idea of attaching a long tape to the witches’ backs to limit their movements epitomises their constraints, it is also an image hinting at the superstitions in which society remains trapped. This “fantastic” element also marks the fine line proposed by the film precisely where reality and its metaphor intersect. And, as if to avoid overwhelming her characters with the fate meted out to them, Rungano Nyoni distils without warning a delicate humour that is remarkably conveyed by the cast of non-professionals. Filmed in Zambia, the director’s home country, this first feature film heralds promising beginnings for a filmmaker who has understood that simply denouncing injustices is of short reach. So as not to “turn into a goat”, she thus prefers to invent a modern feminist tale where her own path can cross the path of cinema. AR

  • Titre français
    I Am Not a Witch
  • Original title
    I Am Not a Witch
  • Scénario
    Rungano NYONI
  • Photo
    David GALLEGO
  • Montage
    Yann DEDET, George CRAGG, Thibault HAGUE
  • Musique
    Matthew JAMES KELLY
  • Interprétation
    Henry B. J. PHIRI, Margaret MULUBWA, Nancy MULILO
  • Production
    Clandestine Films, Soda Pictures
  • Producteur délégué
    Juliette GRANDMONT, Emily MORGAN
  • Distribution
    Pyramide : rarnold@pyramidefilms.com
  • Support de projection
    DCP
  • Sous-titrage
  • Ratio

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