Come Back, Africa (4/15, 4:45pm)

“A HEROIC FILM! This picture opened the eyes of many people to Apartheid — myself included.” — Martin Scorsese

This powerful and unflinching second feature from the director of the legendary NYC skid-row masterpiece On The Bowery comes to Cinefamily in a brand-new 35mm print! Filmed in secret from the South African government, Come Back, Africa is a devastating, yet uplifting street-level portrait of the inhumanities of state-sponsored racism, and the glimmers of hope found through community, dance and music. Convincing authorities that he was there to simply make a musical travelogue, director Lionel Rogosin went underground to film the fish-out-of-water story of a rural African who comes to Johannesburg looking for a dignified job, only to be mentally and physically battered by the realities of Apartheid. Using non-professional actors (including a young, then-undiscovered Miriam Makeba, who performs two full songs), Rogosin captures a truly stunning docudrama vibe, juxtaposing the ugly actions of uptight whites with the vibrant culture of native Africans scraping by to survive. Ignored in the segregated U.S. upon its initial 1960 release, Come Back, Africa has brilliantly resurfaced to become one of the great cinematic historical documents of its era.
Dir. Lionel Rogosin, 1960, 35mm, 83 min.

Watch the trailer for “Come Back, Africa”!
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