I believe that the very best we can achieve in our lives first comes as a dream, thus the liberty of dreaming is the ultimate tool that can help any human being evolve and reach out to their full potential. And nothing can do this better then cinema.
Growing up in the democratic republic of the Congo, my young life of 18 years old was divided into two worlds which were composed of misplaced canvases that echoed just a very bit of me, because one thing was denied to me since I was born, and that was the freedom to shape and realize my dream. Lost in the darkness of Bukuva and later in Goma, the bit of chance that I had to watch TV was a miracle, a golden moment that I didn’t want to let go of. It was always fascinating to see a fearless Bruce Lee kick the buts of hundreds of people, or a Jackie Chan conquering a room filled with police officers, despite my lack of English or Chinese language, these films spoke to me, and they built a dream in me, the dream of one day living a way from Africa.
For the past ten years, I have worked and studied in three continents, and now my life is based in southern Germany. When I now look back at my early discovery of cinema, and compare what I saw to what I should seen, the beautiful creation of Ousmane Sembène or that of Djibril, to name but a few, I wonder if my dreams would’ve been to leave Africa, I wonder if I would’ve tried hard and create my dream through troubles and wars of the Congo. My generation might have missed on this chance, but a very young, fragile, exposed to as much danger as mine did, has that chance and through more creative input from African talents, a dream can indeed be built in Africa.
The first time I saw “An African City” from creator Nicole Armateifo – I was moved, not that this is the first series to touch on the “New Africa” or as I see it, “A reinvented Afrcia”, to me, it’s the first that truly spoke to the need of a fantasia that Africa has always brought from other part of the world. Now there is something close to home, something achieved and done by people we can see as our neighbors, friends, family or simply the next guy on the street. There is no Pitt or Chan, rather you and me, an image that is so familiar and renders the fiction so real and almost touchable. Ghana might be miles and miles away from my home countries Rwanda and Congo DRC, but these stories resonate throughout the continent and touch everyone.
Some people might argue that too much ambition can be harmful, but I don’t believe in a dreamless life. With dreams come ambitions and with ambitions come possibilities and with possibilities a future is build. I hope 2015 African filmmakers can take “An African City” as an inspiration and build upon that dream to create more dreams.
Sorry for my typos, I was born on January 3rd