Nelson Mandela: The Myth & Me
Directed by: Khalo Matabane
Friday, June 13, 2014
Dir. in person! US premiere
South African filmmaker Khalo Matabane was an idealistic teenager with fanciful ideas about a post-apartheid era of freedom and justice when the great icon of liberation Nelson Mandela was released from prison in 1990. In a personal odyssey encompassing an imaginary letter to Mandela and conversations with politicians, activists, intellectuals, and artists, Matabane questions the meaning of freedom, reconciliation, and forgiveness—and challenges Mandela’s legacy in today’s world of conflict and inequality. The film juxtaposes Matabane’s inner quest for coherence with the opinions of people who both knew Mandela and those whose political perspectives were shaped by him. Matabane weighs equally the words of his subjects, leading us to question these concepts as well. Special Jury Award, International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam 2013.
The death of Nelson Mandela on December 5, 2013, was a tremendous loss. He was widely credited for shepherding South Africa’s peaceful transition to a more equitable and democratic system. A cornerstone of that transition was South Africa’s constitution, which enshrines fundamental values of human dignity, equality, and freedom, as well as the importance of nation building, public participation, and social cohesion. Almost two decades into its democracy, South Africa is not the country that Mandela had said he hoped it would become. Economic inequality and poverty remain rife; the education and health sectors are inadequate; and South Africa remains divided by various forms of separation.
Part of the Human Rights Watch Film Festival 2014NR, 84 Minutes