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Cry the Beloved Country VHS and DVD 111 minutes 1995
PG-13 Director: Darrell James Roodt
Set in South Africa in the 1940s, Cry the Beloved Country is the story of a black South-African preacher who
goes in search for his wayward son who has committed a crime in Johannesburg. The film is often criticized
for not indicting the oppressive state’s role in the crime; however, the film still portrays the racial inequalities
and hardships of being black in early-apartheid South Africa.
More information from the African Media Project:

Girls Apart VHS 40 minutes 1987
Director: Chris Sheppard and Claude Sauvageot
Girls Apart tells the story of two teenage schoolgirls – one black, one white – but both South African. The
contrasts between the two girls’ lives, emphasized by the film’s interviews and exploration of daily habits,
illustrate the magnitude and restrictiveness of apartheid.
More information from the African Media Project:

Last Grave at Dimbaza VHS 55 minutes 1974
Director: Nana Mahomo
Shot illegally and smuggled out of the country, Last Grave at Dimbaza exposes the oppressive living and
working conditions of 18 million blacks as opposed to the conditions of the 4 million whites who rule over
them in 1974 South Africa. This documentary had enormous impact on exposing the plight of South Africans
to international audiences.
More information from the African Media Project:

Maids and Madams VHS 53 minutes 1985
Director: Mira Hamermesh
Filmed secretly using local crews, Maids and Madams examines apartheid, sexism, and racism through the
emotional relationships between the black household worker and white employer. Interviews with female
workers and employers give this documentary a unique perspective on apartheid.
More information from the African Media Project:

South Africa Belongs to Us VHS 35 minutes 1980
Director: Ruth Weiss, Peter Chappell, Chris Austin
In South Africa Belongs to Us, a wife left behind in the homelands, a hospital cleaner, a public health nurse
from Soweto, a domestic servant, and a leader of a squatters' camp battle for human dignity in the face of
apartheid. Made in 1980, this film still provides one of the best introductions to the daily violence wreaked by
apartheid on African family life and the social fabric.
More information from the African Media Project:

Amandla! A Revolution in Four-Part Harmony VHS and DVD 103 minutes 2003
PG-13 Director: Lee Hirsch
Amandla! recounts the history of the anti-apartheid struggle from 1950-1990’s by examining different
freedom songs. Particularly valuable for its interviews, archival footage, and filmed performances, the film
shows that music was crucial not only in communicating a political message to protesters and opponents but
also in strengthening the resistance itself.
More information from the African Media Project:

Generations of Resistance VHS 52 minutes 1980
Although filmed in 1980 and thus lacking the mass demonstrations of the 1980’s, this documentary traces
one hundred years of organized resistance movements against colonization and apartheid by white and
black South Africans. Invaluable archival footage and interviews with key freedom fighters make this film
stand out.
More information from the African Media Project:

Mandela: Son of Africa, Father of a Nation VHS and DVD 118 minutes 1996
Director: Jo Menell and Angus Gibson
This documentary combines interviews with Mandela, anti-apartheid songs, archival footage, newsreels, and
contemporary footage to illustrate the life of Nelson Mandela, from his youth to his election as president of
South Africa.

Mapantsula VHS and DVD 104 minutes 1988
Director: Oliver Schmitz and Thomas Mogotlane
Through a series of flashbacks experienced by the imprisoned protagonist, Panic, Mapantsula portrays one
man’s transformation into an empowered dissident against apartheid. Mapantsula was the first anti-
apartheid feature film for, by, and about black South Africans and gives an excellent introduction to township
life and culture under apartheid.
More information from the African Media Project:

Witness to Apartheid VHS 58 minutes 1986
Director: Sharon Sopher Producer: Inc. Developing News
Filmed secretly during the State of Emergency, Witness to Apartheid focuses on South African youth who
were tortured and detained during this era. The film documents multiple human rights violations, offering one
of the best accounts of the violence of the South African police responses to the people’s uprisings.
More information from the African Media Project:

You Have Struck a Rock VHS 28 minutes 1981
Director: Deborah May
You Have Struck a Rock examines “women’s campaigns” of the 1940-1960’s and highlights women of all
colors working against apartheid as an integral contribution to the liberation struggle.
More information from the African Media Project:


Long Night's Journey into Day VHS and DVD 94 minutes 2000
Teachers Guide Available:
Director: Deborah Hoffman and Frances Reid
Spanning a two-year period, Long Night’s Journey into Day follows four cases of the Truth and
Reconciliation Commission, providing background to the crimes as well as interviews with the victims and
perpetrators. The film illustrates the enormous divisions that South Africa must overcome in the post-
apartheid era.
More information from the African Media Project:


Red Ribbon around My House VHS 26 minutes 2001
Director: Portia Rankoane
Part of the 25-episode Steps for the Future series, Red Ribbon around My House explores the mother’s
refusal to accept the social ostracism that often plagues South Africa’s HIV/AIDS patients. The film focuses
on the relationship between the HIV-positive mother and her embarrassed daughter, illustrating how the
AIDS crisis affects family members and everyday life.
More information from the African Media Project:

Road to Riches VHS and DVD 57 minutes 2003
Director: Mandy Jacobson
An episode of PBS’s Wide Angle series, Road to Riches explores the need for economic black
empowerment in post-apartheid South Africa, using the Uthigo national lottery as a starting point. A ten-
minute preview clips is available online, along with many other resources:
More information from the African Media Project:

The Swenkas 72 minutes 2004
Director: Jeppe Rønde
A group of Zulu men in Johannesburg who call themselves "Swenkas" compete for cash and prizes each
Saturday night in an event that's part fashion show, part choreography, and part moral code.

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