Cyber Ethiopia

DIFRET “Daring” – a film review by Amb. Imru Zelleke

DifretThis is a serious movie that depicts in depth the traumatic times that the  Ethiopian society is undergoing from an ever present past towards an inescapable future.  It is a true portrayal of our contemporary national life, with all its contradictions, misconceptions, misunderstandings, of the struggle to survive a grueling existence amidst a violent social turmoil, of despair and hope. This is not an allegory of some past events, it is about present day Ethiopian society.

It mirrors the enormous disparity between the new urban moneyed class and  the abject poverty of the ordinary people. The fear of the ominous bureaucracy and the indifference of the judicial system are glaringly visible throughout the movie. Particularly, the plight of women in a traditional society still anchored in some brutal practices, and the courage and integrity of the young female lawyer and her elder associate who defy even the highest judicial authority, is a magnificent portrayal of the resilience and courage of Ethiopian womanhood.

The film was inspired by a true story and is shot in a genuine physical milieu in which it might have occurred. The subject was treated with candor and intellectual honesty, no frills, no special effects, no paraphernalia. Cinema wise I think that the film belongs to a category called “cinema verite”.  However, unlike these kind of movies that are usually shot with hand held cameras, the use of professional gear has enhanced its visual quality. The exterior and interior scenes have been shot meticulously and convey most convincingly the mood and temper of the story. This is not an amusement movie but a profound comment about a society in transformation.

The Director Ato Zeresenay Berhane and the producers Woyzero Dr. Mehret  Mandefro  have shown a keen understanding of Ethiopian social fabric, they represent the promising future generation.  The heroines of the story Hirut and the lawyer Meron  as well as all the other actors have given a wonderful performance. Director Zeresenay deserves high credits for writing the script and for his delicate and skillful direction of non-professional actors into acting admirably in difficult and complex roles.  Compliments are also due to the team of producers, especially to Angela Jolie for participating in this venture and adding to her illustrious work this unique artistic achievement.  This is a film to be seen more than once to seize fully its meaning and significance to our future social development.

We should look forward to other cinematic works by Director Zeresenay Berhane and producer Dr. Mehret Mandefro, whishing them our highest congratulations.

More at http://difret.com/

Short URL: http://cyberethiopia.com/2013/?p=737

Posted by on Mar 21 2014. Filed under News, Views and Opinions. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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The then-TPLF-dominated regime in Ethiopia was the first in sub-Saharan Africa to actively engage in political censorship of the Internet .

Since May 2006, the most popular Ethiopian web sites (including CyberEthiopia) and several blogs have been blocked across the nation. The apparent objective was to prevent the dissemination of information that is critical of the regime.

Following the political protests which have swept the nation since November 2015, the regime has routinely shutdown the Internet and restricted access to Social Media (including Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Viber) and indicated its keenness to control Social Media.

On 22nd June 2018, the new Prime Minister Dr Abye Ahmed's government reported that it had unblocked 264 websites including CyberEthiopia.com after 12 years of blockage as attested by the OONI’s thorough verifications of our website’s unblocking .




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