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Royal Hotel

It's raining films in Durban

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25 July: Day 1 The Weather Girls sing about it's raining men. In Durban it's raining wonderful films and the weather is miserable too in what is normally a balmy sub-tropical city. I have been planning my viewing schedule since the programme was released a month ago and it constantly changed as there is so much to see and the films are so varied and the must-see ones clash. I try to include the big festival winners - and they are all in Durban. I left the schedule 80% percent comp...

Paul Watson in Durban

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Paul Watson at Durban International Film Festival Time Magazine called him one of the 20 environmental heroes of the 20th century.  The Guardian mentioned him as one of 50 people who could save the planet. These are some of the numerous accolades bestowed on Paul Watson which also include honorary citizenships, environmental, animal rights and human rights awards.He has also been denied visas, banned in certain places, and arrested on numerous occasions for his provocative activism....

Day of acceptance

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Day 2 kicked off with rain and wind and yesterday was sunny and hot. I am not sure which I prefer... The day promised a lot and I didn't realise that the 3 films that I was about to see all had the same basic theme - acceptance. I caught Coming out of the nkuta, a film from Cameroon, at the Royal Hotel and was stunned at how prejudiced the society in Cameroon is. Homosexuality is still banned with "culprits" going to jail for five years. Apparantly, this country is even worse than mo...

Durban in full swing

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I have arrived yesterday 28 July and what a day it was! Flying in from Johannesburg was memorable as I saw two South African singing sensations making out at the drop-off. They can be compared to Bollywood stars as they have just starred in a local film together called Jakhalsdans where they fell in love on the set! It was something to behold to see thse two kissing as they would have been arrested in places like Dubai. The flight down - just under 50 mins - was routine and then Durban hit me...

Doccies at DIFF

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Of the forty-three documentaries in this year's DIFF, twenty-one are from or in co-production with South Africa , and eight are from or in co-production with African countries. Politics and history feature prominently. Iseta - Beyond the Roadblock covers the return to Rwanda of the filmmaker who shot the only known footage of killings during the Rwanda genocide, remarkable considering that over a million people were murdered. Zola Maseko explores ancient African civilization in The Manuscripts ...

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