Above: Actors (from left) Evelyn Arthur Johnson, Veronika
Avraham, Aaron Arefe and Abeye Tedla (From official Venezia
65 Awards )
NYT (Culture News and Views)
By Steven McElroy
“Teza,” an Ethiopian film about the ruthless regime of the former dictator Mengistu Haile Mariam, who was in power in Ethiopia from 1974 until 1991, won the Golden Stallion of Yennenga, the top prize at the Fespaco film festival in Burkina Faso, Reuters reported. The film’s Ethiopian-born director, Haile Gerima, currently lives in the United States and his sister Selome Gerima, who also co-produced the film, accepted in his honor at the event, which plays a similar role in Africa to the Academy Awards in the United States. Read More.
Ethiopian film takes top prize at Africa film festival
OUAGADOUGOU (AFP) – The Ethiopian film “Teza” by director Haile Gerima took the Golden Stallion of Yennenga on Saturday for best film at the Pan-African Film and Television Festival.
The jury’s unanimous pick for top honours, “Teza” deals with the brutal regime of dictator Haile Mariam Mengistu in the 1970s and 1980s.
It revolves around an idealistic scientist who returns to Ethiopia during the Mengistu regime. Beautifully filmed, “Teza” switches between present and past in a series of flashbacks between protagonists time studying in Germany in the 1970s, Ethiopia in the 1980s and the present.
It deals with big themes — emigration, return, dictatorship, racism, war and the position of women — without getting preachy.
Gerima (pictured above left with Tunisian Culture Minister Abderraouf Basti) was not present in Ouagadougou to collect the award, so his sister Selome Gerima, who co-produced the film, accepted it on his behalf.