South Africa, Colombia

Director: Milisuthando Bongela

Language: English, Xhosa

Set in past and present South Africa, Milisuthando is a poetic coming-of-age personal essay documentary on love and what it means to become human in the context of race, explored through the memories of Milisuthando who grew up during Apartheid, but didn’t know it was happening until it was over. The story braids together three different worlds – the now defunct Republic of Transkei, East London in the 1990s new South Africa, and her adult life in Johannesburg. Spanning 30 years in a non-linear manner, the film is a meditation on difficult questions about power, fear, intimacy, and love as it relates to race. A roving feminine lens takes the viewer into the interiors of the new South Africa and its relationship with its past.


22 July | 17:15 | Suncoast 8
28 July | 17:00 | Suncoast 7



Milisuthando Bongela


Marion Isaacs


Milisuthando Bongela


Hankyeol Lee




128 min

Milisuthando Bongela

Milisuthando Bongela is an award-winning writer, editor, cultural worker and artist. Her career began in the fashion industry, but the last 15 years has seen her traverse the worlds of music, art, media and film, continually turning towards indigenous knowledge. For three years she was Arts Editor for the Mail & Guardian's Friday section and was host and co-producer of the podcast UMOYA: ON AFRICAN SPIRITUALITY with Athambile Masola. MILISUTHANDO is her first film, a personal essay documentary which will have its world premiere at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival in the World Cinema Documentary Competition. She is an inaugural fellow of the 2020 Adobe Women at Sundance Fellowship.
DIFF 2023


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