A Girl About Town
Difret – Film Screening | A Girl About Town
I was invited down by the lovely people at Soda Pictures to the legendary Soho House for a screening of Award-winning film Difret.
Produced by actress Angelina Jolie and director, Zeresenay Berhane Mehari the film has been hot commodity since it’s initial release in 2014, picking up awards at the Sundance Film Festival last year and also at 64th Berlin International Film Festival
So what is it about?
Three hours outside of Addis Ababa, a bright 14-year-old girl is on her way home from school when men on horses swoop in and kidnap her. The brave Hirut grabs a rifle and tries to escape, but ends up shooting her would-be husband. In her village, the practice of abduction into marriage is common and one of Ethiopia’s oldest traditions.
Meaza Ashenafi, an empowered and tenacious young lawyer, arrives from the city to represent Hirut and argue that she acted in self-defense. Meaza boldly embarks on a collision course between enforcing civil authority and abiding by customary law, risking the continuing work of her women’s legal-aid practice to save Hirut’s life.
Based on a real-life story, this film goes beneath the layer of polite social customs to explore an aggressively rooted patriarchy that perpetuates inhospitable conditions for women in Ethiopia and portrays the complexity of a country’s transformation toward equal rights, featuring the courageous generation that dares to own it.
I’m a big film lover and can honestly say this was a good film. Although it started off a bit slow, half way in I was hooked, and by the end of the movie I was literally holding back my tears. Not only because the film was based on a real life story and it truly hurt my soul to think of what the young woman must have gone through – but also because her story isn’t hers alone, it’s one of thousands, and it’s still happening today.
The film really does draw you in and shares a great message. It definitely opened my eyes to the dangerous cultural practices are still going in different parts of the world.
If you’re into big blockbuster movies with guns and fast cars, or hollywood fairytale endings then this film may not be for you. However, if you love film and want to watch a well-put together film, with depth, culture and heart… then get yourself down to the cinema and watch Difret. Still not sure? Then check out the trailer below and decide for yourself:
You can also find UK cinema listing info here: www.sodapictures.com/film/difret.