Événements

AfricAvenir zur Berlin Premiere von Kivu Ruhorahozas Spielfilm „Grey Matter – The Cycle oft he Cockroach »
20h00, ins Hackesche Höfe Kino ein. Entrance: 7,50 €

Français

Berlin Premiere: Grey Matter – The « Burden of Surviving » on the aftermath of the genocide in Rwanda, FR, 3 May 2013, 20h00, Hackesche Höfe Kino.

On Friday, 3 May 2013 at 8 p.m. AfricAvenir presents the Berlin Premiere of the acclaimed Rwandan drama « Grey Matter » by Director Kivu Ruhorahozas at Hackesche Höfe Kino. « Grey Matter » shows the story of the young Rwandan filmmaker Balthazar who wants to realize his first project – « The cycle of the cockroach ». It’s a fictional story about a young woman who survived unspeakable atrocities to find herself committed to the same mental institution as a man driven insane by the crimes he perpetrated during the war. Balthazar can’t find any funding for his project but he still tries to turn his vision into practice. During the working process the differences between reality and fiction become blurred little by little. « Grey Matter » is offering a rare insight into « the burden of survival » in the aftermath of the genocide in Rwanda. Director Kivu Ruhorahoza has created a moving film which shows the traumatic experiences that distressed the survivors and how they try to cope with them.

« Armed with a daring and creative visual language, writer/director Kivu Ruhorahoza boldly grasps at the illusionary trick of representation in the wake of trauma and its ensuring madness. » (Tribeka Filmfestival 2011)

The screening will be followed by a discussion with Adebayo Olukoshi (tbc) who is working for the United Nations African Institute for Economic Development and Planning and a small reception in the cinema foyer.

This screening is organized in cooperation with the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung, SODI, Dafrig, Planète Métis, Jozi.tv, Cybernomads and the ISD.

One of the first feature films written and directed by a Rwandan



Synopsis
The film tells three stories which are separate and at times connected. In the first one, the young African filmmaker Balthazar is looking for money in Kigali to produce his debut film, « The Cycle of the Cockroach », but the government refuses to finance a film based on the aftermath of the genocide in Rwanda. It’s a fictional story about a young woman who survived unspeakable atrocities to find herself committed to the same mental institution as a man driven insane by the crimes he perpetrated during the war. Potential funders for the film insist the themes are too bleak and pessimistic – they encourage Balthazar to make a « message » that raises awareness about gender-based violence or HIV/AIDS instead. But he refuses to give up. Instead of telling his production team the news, Balthazar continues preparations for the film without financing or equipment. After rehearsing a scene with each of the characters, reality blurs and scenes from the script materialize, provoking the question: Can a film like this exist only in the director’s dreams?

In that film within the film two siblings grapple with codependency and post-traumatic stress disorder after the 1994 Rwandan genocide. There are no emotional fireworks here, just smoldering, quiet, lonely agony. Ruth Shanel Nirere is especially compelling as the resourceful and tough caretaker sister, Justine. As she hopes, the salvation of her shattered brother, Yvan, is his work as an artist, the eventual wind chimes. Another story portrays a man, locked up in an asylum, who was an assassin during the war.

We are left questioning whether Balthazar’s fiction is enough to exorcise whatever demons may be lurking in his mind. Never addressed by name, the Rwandan genocide is here for the first time explored in its philosophical, psychological and intellectual dimensions. With poetic cinematography and an outstanding ensemble cast, this trenchant and luminous drama is a daring and challenging first feature from talented Rwandan writer-director Kivu Ruhorahoza.

« Grey Matter is a movie about imagination and madness. It is a story about the capacity of the brain to create, destroy and auto-destroy itself. It troubles me a lot to know that my imagination, my creativity, my insecurities and insanities all come from there.

The topic of this film is very important to me. Though the story has autobiographical elements, I not go so far as to say that it is an autobiographical work. The first part of the Film I show a young filmmaker facing the worst difficulties to make his first feature film. I am obviously showing glimpses of what I go through to make a film in a country where cinema has to serve the community. With this I wanted to tell the story of my country from an original perspective while maintaining the key elements that made the tragedy of my country possible » Kivu Ruhorahoza

Press Reviews
« Ruhorahoza reveals the quietly terrifying depiction of violence-induced madness to be the obverse of the policy of calculated, forward-looking oblivion; his brilliant ending distills the paradoxes of normalcy atop a volcano of blood into a single, stinging shot. » The New Yorker

« (…) « Grey Matter » left me deeply disturbed but super inspired. More than a simply milestone for Ruhorahoza or his country’s film industry, the film reminds us of the genuine (and unparalleled) power of art to address, cope with, and (maybe? someday?) solve the massive problems over there, and over here. » Studio Museum Harlem

« Kivu Ruhorahoza’s « Grey Matter » is a cerebral, surreal portrait of a young filmmaker struggling to lens his first pic in a country recently torn apart by war. When funding falls through for Balthazar, the fictional helmer, he decides to push ahead without telling his crew. As the pic unfolds, it becomes unclear if he’s succeeded in shooting his film, about two young survivors and a madman secluded in a mental hospital, or if it’s all in his imagination. » Christopher Vourlias, Variety

« Armed with a daring and creative visual language, writer/director Kivu Ruhorahoza boldly grasps at the illusionary trick of representation in the wake of trauma and its ensuring madness. Paralleling the protagonist in his film, Ruhorahoza’s debut marks the very first feature-length narrative film directed by a Rwandan filmmaker living in his homeland. » TFF 2011 Website

Cast
Ramadhan Bizimana… Yvan
Tamim Hakizimana… The Lying Technician
Kennedy Jones Mazimpaka… The Money Lender
Jean Pierre Kalonda… The Commision Guy
Hervé Kimenyi… Balthazar
Natasha Muziramakenga… Mary
Ruth Nirere… Justine
Juma Moses Nzabandora… The Psychiartrist
Jp Uwayezu… Madman

Country: Rwanda
Languages: Kinyarwanda | French
Runtime: 110 min
Sound Mix: Stereo
Color: Color
Aspect Ratio: 1.85 : 1


Friday, 03. May 2013, 20h00
Entrance 7,50 €
Discount via Berlinpass, Gildepass, Heavy User Card, Filmreihe-Pass (Further information: www.hoefekino.de/preise-und-rabatte)

Tickets and Information
030 283 46 03
www.hackesche-hoefe.org

Hackesche Höfe Kino
Rosenthaler Str. 40/41
10178 Berlin
S Hackescher Markt
U Weinmeisterstraße

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DE

„Grey Matter » erzählt die Geschichte des jungen ruandischen Filmemachers Balthazar, der kurz davor steht, sein erstes Projekt zu realisieren – « The cycle of the cockroach ». Es ist eine fiktionale Geschichte über eine junge Frau, der Schreckliches angetan wurde und die sich in derselben psychiatrischen Anstalt wiederfindet wie der Täter. Balthazar findet zwar keine Geldgeber für sein Projekt, setzt aber trotzdem alles daran, seine Vision umzusetzen. Doch nach und nach verschwimmen bei der Arbeit an dem Film Realität und Fiktion. « Grey Matter » bietet einen seltenen Einblick in die « Bürde des Überlebens » nach dem Völkermord in Ruanda.
Dem Regisseur Kivu Ruhorahoza gelang eine ergreifende Darstellung, wie tief die traumatischen Erlebnisse die Überlebenden erschüttert haben und wie sie versuchen, diese zu verarbeiten.

Am Freitag, 3. Mai 2013 um 20 Uhr lädt AfricAvenir zur Berlin Premiere von Kivu Ruhorahozas preisgekrönten Spielfilm „Grey Matter – The Cycle oft he Cockroach »ins Hackesche Höfe Kino ein.

Im Anschluss an den Film findet ein Publikumsgespräch mit Adebayo Olukoshi vom United Nations African Institute for Economic Development and Planning (angefragt) in Dakar statt, sowie ein kleiner Empfang im Kino-Foyer.