The audience empathizes with tamari who feels

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The audience empathizes with Tamari who feels responsible for her brother’s death because she was not there to save him. The final scene with her brother’s funeral is Dangarembga’s way of calling attention to the AIDs epidemic in Africa and explicitly telling the audience that women and children are in dire need of financial insurance. Dangarembga’s film critiques how young African girls are turning to prostitution; she demands that social change needs to happen. Although the narratives of Fanta Regina Nacro’s The Night of Truth (Burkina Faso, 2004) and Dorothee Wenner’s Nollywood Lady (Nigeria, 2008) 14
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do not explicitly advocate for women’s rights, their being made by females alone improve African women’s image in society. The Night of Truth takes place in a fictional African country that has been facing a decade of genocide with an ongoing war between the Nayak and Bonard nations. Although the President of Nayak and Colonel Theo of the Bonard revolutionaries arrange a night to celebrate resolution, it is the women who are depicted as outwardly and ruthlessly refusing to forget the casualties. One scene involves Edna, the President of Nayak’s wife, verbalizing that she cannot forget all that has been done to her people by the Bonards as she mourns the death of her son. Nacro empowers women with strong female characters like Edna. Nollywood Lady is a woman-made documentary about the Nigerian female filmmaker and producer, Peace Anyiam-Fibresima. Although she discusses economic struggles of the filmmaking process in Lagos rather than the need to improve women’s national status, Anyiam-Fibresima implies female empowerment as Wenner shares her accomplishments with the audience. The viewers learn that Anyiam-Fibresima is educated with a law degree and is the founder and CEO of the African Academy of Motion Pictures. Her status alone gives hope for future female filmmakers. Wang 15
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Still, with so few female filmmakers as of today, it is relevant to discuss how female characters in male-made films portray women. The melodrama has become very popular in African cinema. Haynes mentions in Nigerian Video Films , “Within Western film criticism, feminism has created a new interest in melodrama as a women’s genre, and the field of popular culture studies has extended this into a class-based sympathy for a subaltern form… This is an obvious context for analysis of the Nigerian video films, but so far it has hardly been brought into the discussion” (23). This implies that consideration for feminism is lacking in African genre discourse. Briefly describing these five films, it is easy to see that there is plenty of improvement to be made for African women’s image: Ousmane Sembene’s Black Girl (Senegal, 1966), Kenneth Nnebue’s Glamour Girls (Nigeria, 1994), Ishaq Sidi Ishaq’s Wasila (Nigeria-Hausa, 2000), Samuel Nyamekye’s Kumasi Yonko (Ghana, 2002), and Andy Chukwu’s Hot Money Trilogy (Nigeria, 2006). Each of these films depicts women as materialistic and ashamed.
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