Dominican film 'Bantú mama' premieres on Netflix
The Dominican Republic’s Best International Feature Film entry for the Oscars, premieres on Netflix on Nov. 17.
MORE IN THIS SECTION
The film Bantú Mama tells the story of a French woman of African origin who manages to escape after being detained in the Dominican Republic. She takes refuge in the most dangerous neighborhood of Santo Domingo (Capotillo), where she is picked up by a group of children. As they becomes her protégés and their mother figure, she will see her destiny change inexorably.
Bantú Mama, directed by the Dominican filmmaker, producer and screenwriter Iván Herrera, premiered this year at the renowned SXSW Film Festival in Austin, Texas, and became the first Dominican production to be accepted in the contest.
Since then, the production premiered at different international festivals and has garnered awards for Best Film at LIFFY 2021 — Latino & Iberia Film Festival at Yale, in the United States, Best Photography at the Huelva Ibero-American Film Festival, Best International Film, Best Cinematography and Best Interpreter (to France's Clarisse Albrecht for her leading role as Emma) at the Durban International Feature Film, award for Best Supporting Actress for Scarlett Reyes (for her role as T.I.N.A.) at the Fine Arts Film Festival Made in RD, among others.
In addition to Albrecht and Reyes, the cast of this film includes Arturo Pérez as $hulo, Euris Javiel as Cuki, Donis Taveras as El Abogado, and Jarold Santos as Cuñao. Albrecht, who in addition to being an actress is a singer-songwriter and former model, not only plays a leading role, but also co-wrote the script with Herrera.
Despite being a low-budget feature film, critics have praised Bantú Mama, and it has recently been chosen by the Dominican Republic Film Academy to represent the country at the next edition of the Oscar Awards in the Best International Film category.
“This is a low-cost film compared to the budgets that are managed in Dominican cinema. It is shown, in this production, that you don't have to have the greatest amount of money to make a film with the results we have achieved. That was a message that we wanted to convey,” Herrera said in an interview with the Dominican newspaper Diario Libre.
In addition to screenings in countries such as Ecuador, the Dominican Republic and Colombia, the film will premiere on Nov. 17 on Netflix, exclusively in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand.