Watch Life, Above All
- 1 hr 40 min
Life, Above All is a dramatic film that was written by Dennis Foon and Allan Stratton, based upon his book. Executive produced by Helge Sasse, other producers include Oliver Stoltz, Greig Buckle, Dan Schlanger and Thomas Reisser. Directed by Oliver Schmitz, the film features Khomotso Manyaka as Chanda, Keaobaka Makanyane as Esther, Harriet Lenabe as Mrs. Tafa (Harriet Manamela), Lerato Mvelase as Lillian, Tinah Mnumzana as Aunt Lizbet, Aubrey Poolo as Jonah and Mapaseka Mathebe as Iris. The story takes place near Johannesburg and concerns 12 year old Chanda (played by Khomotso Manyaka). Her family relies upon her to keep everything together after her younger sister abruptly dies. She goes to find an inexpensive coffin since her father is a drunk and mother (played by Lerato Mvelase) and other family members are too grief stricken to do it. Mrs. Tafa (played by Harriet Manamela) is the next door neighbor who helps her take care of the two younger siblings. Things get complicated when suspicions arise through the neighborhood that the family is stricken with AIDS. Chanda does as much as she can to care for the kids in an effort to maintain composure. She supports a good friend called Esther (played by Keaobaka Makanyane) who must earn a living and finds herself being forced into prostitution. Neighbors are fearful and gather around the family's home due to their concern about contracting AIDS. Mrs. Tafa takes them on, defending them with a power that is surprising, given her usual gentle demeanor. By the movie's end, the townspeople have gained an understanding about the AIDS epidemic and are not so quick to judge. Bavaria Film Intl. produced the film, along with Dreamer Joint Venture productions and Senator Film Produktion, Niama Film and Enigma Pictures. (International sales: Bavaria Film Intl., Geiselgasteig, Germany.) Directed by Oliver Schmitz. Screenplay, Dennis Foon, based on the novel "Chanda's Secrets" by Allan Stratton.