Africa in Motion
Maangamizi, The Ancient One
Fri 18 November 2022
Maangamizi, The Ancient One (Martin Mhando & Ron Mulvihill, 2001)
Maangamizi, The Ancient One based on a story by Queenae Mulvihill, is a film that explores the breadth of African consciousness and spiritual heritage through the story of three women: a doctor, her patient, and the ancestral spirit who unites them. This is Tanzania's first entry in the Academy Awards (Jonathan Demme was one of the executive producers), and is a tale of clashing beliefs and lore. Samehe is a patient in Dr. Moshi's rural African mental hospital, a mute orphaned "under mysterious circumstances" who has not spoken a word in 20 years. All day she sits at the window, watching and waiting, and at night she produces remarkable drawings of lost people and places.
When she was a little girl, Samehe communed with ghosts of her ancestors, and felt the powers of the forests, of the rivers and the mountains. Her spirituality outraged her father, a fire-and-brimstone Christian minister, whose piety drove him to commit a heinous act that plunged his daughter into psychological trauma. Now, Samehe's powers are beginning to emerge again.
Presented in partnership with Ajabu Ajabu and Cinema Rediscovered.
Part of Africa in Motion 2022