Movie tells untold African stories

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By Neo Kolane

Twenty-one-year old, Refiloe Mafatle is a cinematographer and film editor who is willing to do more to contribute to the film industry in Lesotho, by telling African stories, hence the release of the movie ‘The Dead’. 

Mafatle, who is the founder of Ntja-Peli Motion Pictures, has worked on a movie called Lia bela lia hloeba and also on a film called Nightmare, whose trailer went viral.

The Berea-born workaholic says ‘The Dead’ is about a young girl who just joined university and is followed by a curse cast on her from the village by her grandmother, and she now faces challenges of seeing old dead people.

“This film is proof that the stories we were told by our forefathers and mothers, especially those people that don’t believe, are real, very real. I want the audience to know that these things happen and, visually, I am hoping to convince them.

“This is a lesson about witchcraft stories which people take for granted and dismiss as a hoax. The movie was shot in Lesotho (Maseru and Berea) and will be premiered on August 7 2020.”

Mafatle also notes that some young people are denied their success by their neighbours in villages especially those who most of the time cast evil spell on them. “These stories are real, so we want people to know about them and stop judging others.”

This movie was shot by Ntja-Peli Motion Pictures, which was founded by Mafatle and Mphatlalatsane Productions which was founded by Tshepo Oliphant, Tumisang Tlhanyane and Tiisetso Kholoane.

“The movie has gotten positive reviews so far and everyone is hungry for my movies. I would say film industry is growing in Lesotho and it is getting bigger by the day. What we have to do as filmmakers in Lesotho is to stick with what we know and have had experience of.

“It is quite disturbing that some people keep criticising shot films in Lesotho. This has to stop because for a video to be called a film, it has to have three structures, which are the beginning, the climax and the end.

“In making short films we want to attract the audience and not bore them, so the length of the movie doesn’t matter; what matters is the story line.”

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