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|African Cinema : My Africas (13)||Feminist Documentary Pioneers : Thousand Voices (11)|
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What do you imagine when you hear ‘Africa’? Black people, AIDS, civil wars, racism, colonialism, or Serengeti National Park, these words cannot cover the range of African realties. Behind the terrible discourse about wars and discrimination, lies a variety of lives of African women. Red Satin focuses on a hidden face of Africa: Arabian culture and women’s lives in Northern Africa.
In modern Tunis, Tunisia, Lilia, an ordinary and orderly woman, lives alone with her daughter Salma, who dreams of becoming a belly dancer. Lilia believes Salma is having affair with Chokri, a cabaret musician. Trying to save her daughter from him, she follows him secretly, only to end up fainting in the cabaret, a whole new world. She wakes up thanks to the help of belly dancers and befriends them by helping with their clothing. Through the mirror, we can see Lilia dancing alone at home, Lilia in dancer’s clothes, and Lilia dancing in the cabaret in front of screaming men. Now, instead of watching her dancing by herself in the mirror, Lilia can enjoy her dancing together with others. Meeting her daughter’s boyfriend leads her to a journey of self-discovery. At her daughter’s wedding, she dances for her daughter and son-in-law, and most of all, for herself. (Sue Kim)
Raja AmariRaja Amari
Raja Amari was born in Tunis in 1971. She trained for many years as a belly dancer at the Conservatoire de Tunis. She studied Romance Languages with an emphasis on Art History at the University of Tunis. She completed her film studies at the Paris film school FEMIS. Her first short film Avril (1998) has won Special Jury Prize at Milan Film Festival and Tunis Short Film Festival. After the second short Un Soir de Juillet (2000), Red Satin is her first feature-length film.