South African movie Inxeba known internationally as The Wound, which makes its African debut today was written by amongst others… Thando Mgqolozana.
Thando Mgqolozana is many things to many people. To the lovers of good writing, he is the guy that gave us three very good books; A Man Who is Not A Man (2009), Hear Me Alone (2011) (our review) and Unimportance (2014) (our review). The first of these was a look a young man who goes through the traditional circumcision practiced by the Xhosa in South that goes horribly wrong. The second was another look at the birth of the lord of one religion and the prophet of another told in an extremely hilarious manner. The last looks at a student leader on the day before he would give a speech to his fellow students to retain his leadership at his university’s Student Representative Council. Many have lauded this book as having being vital literature to the #FeesMustFall movement that emerged in South African universities in 2015.
To others he is the bane of the white colonial literary system. The genesis of this begun when he announced at the whitest literary festival, the Franschhoek Literary Festival, that he would be boycotting this system that was totally abnormal in 2015. Many would support this boycott with many of his contemporaries steering clear of that festival since then.
He then went on to curate what many consider to be the most important iteration of the Time of the Writer literary conference that happened in the following year. This was followed to its logical end as he founded, with many others, the Abantu Book Festival that ran in December 2016. The next edition is set to happen this year hopefully with your contribution.
Turns out that this enemy of the white colonial isn’t just about festivals and writing great books. He is one of the writers of movie Inxeba, known internationally as The Wound, set to make its debut in South Africa today. The movie is the first feature from writer-director John Trengove, and is co-written by Trengove, Thando Mgqolozana and Malusi Bengu. The Xhosa initiation ritual, which forms the landscape of the film, is also the subject of Mgqolozana’s debut novel, A Man Who Is Not a Man.
Did I mention that Nakhane Toure is one of the people featuring in this movie? Check out its trailer.
So if you happen to be in Durban today, try and head out to The Playhouse at the Durban International Film Festival.