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#AFRIFF2017: Poor Logistics, Seeing “Visions” & Ghana’s Beautiful Comedy – A Recap Of My First Day

BY ‘SEGUN ODEJIMI


So I finally was able to attend the 2017 edition of the Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF) yesterday after missing the first two days due to some brief under-the-weather stint.

WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED TO COMMUNICATION, AFRIFF?

This year, the organisers tried to do the right thing as regards accreditation of media attendees. Previously, under some very great thinking, someone thought it was cool to first of all go all the way to Eko Hotel (where nothing else as per AFRIFF happens) to get your accreditation and your tag before proceeding to where your festival interest lies. Considering Lagos’ nack for accommodating traffic demons, that was a poor idea.

In the confirmation email that I received last month, I was still directed to proceed to Eko Hotel to get my pass. When I got to Eko Hotel, I was confronted with two very stupid situations. The person who I was referred to when I announced my business was busy frolicking, over the phone, with another human. She only acknowledged my presence with a stare before continuing her talk with the other person about “coming to your office for lunch, since your place is not far”. I was miffed. But that wasn’t the only annoying thing that I would encounter within the next ten minutes. When this female ended the call about four years later, she smiled and told me that Rick Nwanso who was in charge of accrediting the media was not around.

Not around, okay cool. Maybe he needed to go and wee-wee at Ajah. But did he drop the tags? She said no. Ife Olujuyigbe had told me the same thing happened to her the previous day. Luckily she was able to get a delegate tag because her short film would be screening at the festival on Thursday. We spent the next thirty minutes trying to reach Nwanso before he said I could get accreditation at either GDC, The Palms or Silverbird Galleria.

What happened to informing people before hand that someone has finally decided to have sense so they don’t have to make the initial long journey to Eko Hotel?

SURREAL COLLECTIVE’S “VISIONS”

My ordeal with Nwanso and friends earlier in the day meant I didn’t get to GDC, The Palms until much into the afternoon. The cinema hall where the industry session was taking place was already filled. I also missed more than the first half of the brilliant documentary on Whitney Houston Can I Be Me. Due to my grumbling stomach, I also missed a chunk of the short films by Abba T Makama, CJ Obasi and Michael Omonua – the three young and adventurous dudes who make up the Surreal Collective. I, however, saw Obasi’s Bruja from start to finish and I thought it was cool stuff. It was easier for me to connect to it because it was a performance ensemble. As I write this, the trio will be getting set to answer questions about what their collective is all about and what their next projects will be. But to say I am simply excited is an understatement.

KETEKE – GHANA’S BEAUTIFUL PERIOD COMEDY

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I know Ghollywood has a ton of film directors but for me, all day-everyday, Shirley Frimpong-Manso tops that pile. I just think she’s brilliant and her works reflect that.

But yesterday, I watched Keteke and I have become actively in search of Peter Sedufia’s other films. Keteke has brilliant dialogue, amazing pictures, good sound design, unforced comedy and the performances of two very good actors – Adjetey Anang and Lydia Forson. The film is about a new couple, the woman heavily pregnant, who attempt a journey but will not stop missing the train.

In an age where local comedy filmmakers think slapstick is all there is to it, Keteke is amazing and actually very funny.

I will have to check with Ife Olujuyigbe to see if she has stopped laughing from last night’s film.

POTATO POTAHTO


Talking about Frimpong-Manso, her Potato Potahto will screen tomorrow and I will be there to see it. There has been a lot of noise about the film and I pretty much can’t wait.

Stanlee Ohikhuare‘s biopic, Idahosa’s Trials will screen tomorrow too. I should see that also as Stanlee is another filmmaker who excites me. I want to see how he does in a journey far removed from the genre we know him for. Idahosa’s Trials is a film about the popular Benin preacher, Archbishop Benson Idahosa.

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Written by Segun Odejimi

Apostle of Sarcasm. Writer. Editor of TNSnigeria. Producer of Segun & the Gang.

Trained as a media/theatre artist and has worked in advertising, TV and radio.