Thursday, March 20, 2014

Actress Lupita Nyong'o is now distributing her documentary about albinism in Kenya on DVD

From Third World Newsreel:

Third World Newsreel is proud distributor of In My Genes, a documentary film by Lupita Nyong'o, winner of the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, the Essence Magazine Best Breakthrough Performance Award and the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for her performance in 12 Years a Slave
What is it like to be 'white' in a 'black' society? In My Genes shares the lives of 8 people with albinism in Kenya. It reveals the uplifting life story of Agnes, a woman with albinism of few means who heads a household of 7 children, her 17-year-old daughter expecting another. During the course of the documentary, Agnes discovers she has skin cancer and finds out the real reason why she lost both of her eyes. Yet Agnes keeps going, trusting in the work of her hands and the strength of her God. The threads of the woolen baskets she weaves blindly hold her family together as she tells us her story.

Interviews with seven other individuals inter-cut Agnes' narrative to share their unique experiences of living with albinism. They ponder on questions about the effects of their condition on aspects of their childhood, adolescence, sexuality, race, and dreams.

In My Genes presents an intimate introduction to albinism, and asks us to consider how it feels to be a member of one of the most hyper-visible and yet invisible groups of people in a predominantly black society. It is a film on disability, minority discrimination, identity, issues of representation, confidence and perception of the other.

"HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. A passionate rebuttal of prejudice and discrimination."
- LaRoi Lawton, Educational Media Reviews Online (EMRO)
"A candid exposé of what it means to live with albinism in Africa, the direct essence of our being."
- Isaac Mwaura, Albinism Society of Kenya
"With her documentary, Lupita Nyong'o tells us about ourselves. About our ability to stigmatize and exclude. Our inability to accept difference. Through CK, Mwaura, Alex and the others- all of whom have faced the challenge of being born with albinism- but mostly through Agnes, Lupita helps us to see life from the perspective of a segment of our society that is highly visible, yet totally invisible in all areas of life. It leaves us with a sense of shame that we can so sorely lack understanding, but it also leaves us with a sense of pride that despite all odds, one can, like Agnes, triumph. It is a must see for all who want to learn, to understand."
- Mumbi Ngugi, Albinism Foundation of East Africa
"...A salutary rebuke to prejudice, in all its forms... In My Genes therefore becomes an important, challenging and, above all, necessary film. Ms. Nyong'o deserves praise for the conversation her debut film invites us to have with ourselves after we have seen it and taken it all in. The dedication is to "different people." Lest we forget: we are all different but the same, as human beings."
- Mwalimu John Sibi-Okumu, Kenyan writer, actor and television presenter
Best Documentary, Five College Film Festival, Northampton, 2008
Souvenir Selection, Africala Film Festival, Mexico City, 2008

New York African Film Festival, 2009
Zanzibar International Film Festival, 2008
New Face of Africa Series, Salt Lake City Film Center, 2008
Re-Imagine Kenya, New York, 2008
Kenya International Film Festival, Nairobi, 2007

Lupita Nyong'o | 2009 | 78 min
2011 | 60 min | DVD with Digital File $225
K-12, Public Libraries & Special Groups $59.95

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