Mother's Day

Mother's Day


Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

The harsh reality of Zimbabwe’s rural poor is expressed by Consolata Ngwenya and Nicholas Mazenda, who play parents of three children. She cannot feed the baby, because her milk has dried up, and they resort to frying termites and eating ants.

“Go out into the forest and hunt,” she taunts him.

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“This will end when we are dead,” she says.

They go out together. She slips off a rock and is impaled on sharp stakes. At this point, the film enters the world of magical musical realism, in which the termites emerge as dancers, the dead mother sings and the dubbing of voices is seen (intentionally?) to be off.

Interspersed with this frenetic gaiety is the real - rather than the magically real - story of the husband chopping up his wife and making a stew of her to feed the children.

Is this writer/director Tsitsi Dangarembga’s statement on Mugabe’s legacy, or a satirical frolic, with insects?

Reviewed on: 26 Feb 2007
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Magic musical realism celebrates a starving family in Zimbabwe.

Director: Tsitsi Dangarembga

Writer: Tsitsi Dangarembga

Starring: Consolata Ngwenya, Nicholas Mazenda

Year: 2005

Runtime: 30 minutes

Country: Zimbabwe


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