2_perseph: (jules contemplative)
The Nigerian Information Minister has made a statement about District 9. She’s called for Sony to apologize and that the Nigerian federal government is going to ban the movie.
 
I just got back from home a couple weeks ago. District 9 opened the Friday before I left.
 
 
Read on )
 
When the narrator started about the Nigerian gang, first there were howls of surprise. Then as the scenes played out there were cries of “Na lie!”, which is the equivalent of “I call foul!” Then it was mostly, “It’s South Africans who eat aliens!”, then “They’re jealous because it’s Nigerian men all their women want!”.
 
Then came the name of the gang leader, the name of our former president, which brought the house down with laughter and people throwing popcorn at the screen, elicited more howling, and cries of “Chay!” which is, “Oh, fuck!” meaning, “ouch.” Then, “See yabbing!” (yabbing meaning “to insult in a witty manner”), concluding with one lone voice chuckling, “I no blame you,” to the director, which means, “Touche.”
 
My aim is to relate this hilarious experience almost word for word. This is because, especially after what our federal government has done in banning the movie, I wanted the voice of ordinary, everyday Nigerians to be heard.
 
The corruption, economic, social, political and macro-psychological problems in Nigeria are too profound to be explained in a nutshell. Or even in a PhD program. But those problems, according to how our government wants to play it, are the disease and not the symptoms. 
 
So when the universities are constantly on strike and students aren’t taught anything, and the salaries of civil servants are paid 10 cents on the dollar while 90 cents are collected by appointed government officials, while roads are nonexistent and cause massive, needless body counts year in year out, when citizens have to dig their own bore holes just to get clean running water in a country gushing crude oil, and when the Coca-Cola bottling company just two days ago, along with over 800 manufacturing companies so far, packed up and left Nigeria BECAUSE WE HAVE NO ELECTRICITY, what is more important to our federal government to send our Information Minister out to do?
 
To go talk about ritualistic crap in a movie.
 
While she was at it she also talked about how Nigerian producers also need to portray Nigerians in a better light in our movies. That is, to likewise stop showing what Neill Blomkamp showed in his movie. 
 
Interestingly, she didn’t ask the federal government to ban any of the Nigerian movies that portray - in worse detail - those disgusting ritualistic acts.
 
Even more interestingly, she didn’t feel the need to ask the federal government TO ACTUALLY DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE RITUAL FUCKING MURDERS TAKING PLACE EVERYFUCKINGDAY IN THE COUNTRY.
 
Instead we speak Orwellian. And the beat goes on.
 
At the end of the day what’s the moral of the story? Well, I’ll tell you.
 
Hypocrisy, and especially while exercising the most profound and consistent disregard, exploitation, injustice and indifference to the misery and lack of basic welfare of your fellow human being to be seen perhaps anywhere on the planet, disqualifies you from ever saying ANYTHING, ANYWHERE, IN THE UNIVERSE.
 
Nigerians inside the country COULDN’T CARE LESS about A FUCKING MOVIE. Nor about esoteric apologies from movie studios in the fabled kingdom of America, when the reality of Nigeria is so. fucking. traumatic for no decent human reason except pure corruption in free reign.
 
So STOP. Stop pretending like you have the privilege to make these statements. You fucking. DONT.
 
Okay. I’m done now. I’m done.
 
Please, understand that I say none of these things out of anything but a severe hatred for the animal farm. 
 
The Nigerian problem is a terrible, terrible one (and it’s a testament to the human spirit that it has nothing to do with our 500 languages [not dialects]). But it’s one we can only solve internally.
 
I would never willingly inflict this subject on an external audience as this movie has forced so many people to do, and I never plan to again. Just had to get this shit off my chest so I can move on to the fucking porn.

Oh, and Barka da Sallah to all my Muslim country people. Ever since I was a little girl, the end of Ramadan has always marked a wonderland time of wandering through friends houses gorging on kebabs. Sucks to have missed out on all that feasting.
2_perseph: (goffena)
When I saw the movie a week ago, I had already been made aware of a seething anger towards it, as viciously racist, though I was not sure of the reason for the sentiment.

I didn't look into it before going to see the movie because I wanted to know as little as possible about a movie I was admittedly fascinated by. I had been at the midnight showing of Wolverine, and this movie's teaser came on.

Bored two seconds in, and ignoring the odd sensations I was getting wondering why there was a trailer for a documentary about refugees trailing before a comic book action movie, I had leaned over to my friend and whispered, "For once, can we not have a movie about Africa that has to be about issues and poverty and refugees? You know what would be nice? If they panned up from that ghetto and showed hovering over the city, a big fucking alien mothership--"

I'm not ashamed to say that I teared up when I saw that big fucking alien mothership hovering over Joburg. It was a feeling, as an African living in the West, I cannot describe. It was as if, after centuries of being denied a life, that every time we were portrayed in film in the Western world, we had to have issues, we were finally allowed to just be part of the creative world. That our creativity, divorced from perceptions of the rest of the world, was finally on the international stage.

It was a moment I'm unlikely to soon forget. And, it looked like a truly remarkable science fiction film.

And I was not disappointed.

Read on )

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