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Women unleash film power

Itai Mushekwe

IF there’s an industry that has failed to subjugate women, it is the film sector in arts and entertainment. Women are now commanding an authoritative role in film, thus moving away from the ind

ustry’s stereotype which paints them as script mimics and not as equal competitive script writers and film directors.

For the fourth year running women through the International Images Film Festival for Women (IIFFW) which starts today have proved just that. The prestigious film fiesta aims at encouraging women’s participation.

IIFFW is organised by the Women Filmmakers of Zimbabwe (WFOZ). This year’s catchy theme is “Women of Passion”. The festival runs to November 12.

IIFFW director, Tsitsi Dangarembga, told Independent Xtra that all is set for today’s official launch and that she’s positive the festival will live up to expectations and move a step ahead in empowering women.

“Our workshops and panel discussions encourage us to reflect more seriously on the conditions that women live in,” she said. “We passionately hope that women will find the week empowering so that their mind sets are changed as a result of ideas they carry which prevent them from reaching their full potential. For men, we equally and passionately hope that by the end of the week, they reconsider their positions on some of the notions that prevail in society that contribute to the subjugation of women.”

Over 20 participants who include those from the embassies from Spain, Japan, Poland, Norway and Iran are set to present their entrant films, which cover a spectrum of issues ranging from trials faced in life to the races in a bid in finding true love.

Of interest among the entrants to the festival are Sweden’s twin entries, which are The arm-wrestler from Solitude and Four Women. The former is a documentary directed by Lisa Munthe and Helen Ahisson, while the later is a feature directed by Baker Karim. The arm-wrestler from Solitude fits in properly with IIFFW as it focuses on a tiny village in the far north of Sweden called Ensamheten (solitude). Among the villagers is a 23-year-old female arm-wrestler, Heidi Anderssson, a four-time world champion. The spirit of togetherness in the small community of sixteen inhabitants teaches Heidi that “alone I’m strong, I can go far; together we are stronger and go further”, as she sets out to take on the world.

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