ART UNVEILS THE UNTOLD
By: Winston Sibanda
Bidder 70, a documentary produced in the United States of America, has hit the South African screens for the first time during the Durban International Film Festival. The documentary has left the audience yearning for more as it has focused on the untold. It highlighted oppression of Tim Dechristopher, a young university student, who was sent to prison for disrupting a bid to open an oil rig for the sake of saving the planet in terms of climate change. This film has broken the silence as it has showed a link between third world countries and first world countries in terms of how the justice system has failed its citizens.
This film is not only a piece of art, but educative as it highlights the link between political and governmental issues facing lower class citizens regardless of race, hence breaking the racial barriers. The majority of the audience rated the film excellent as they felt that Beth Gage, the director of the documentary, did a great job of highlighting how voiceless the low class of societies is. Nobel prize winner Terry Root said that she felt her generation failed today’s generation because it did not have the guts to fight for what was right for their small communities. The imprisonment of Dechristopher became a controversial aspect of the discussions after viewing Gage’s work. This saw a lot of people among the audience linking the events to what is happening in South Africa today.
According to Numbulelo, one of the hostesses at the Blue Waters Hotel which hosted the bidder 70 audience, there has been a growing trend of adults coming to view documentaries. She further stated that the young age is in favor with short films as they feel it best defines their age. She also said that all the films being showcased are fit for all age groups and people need to break the stereotype. The Durban International Film festival has marked its ninth day of showcase today and it continues to show the beauty of art through film.