Mika Kaurismäki’s documentary about world-famous South African singer Miriam Makeba, who spent half a century travelling the world spreading her political message to fight racism, poverty and promote justice and peace, is a tribute to a woman who embodied the hopes and the voice of Africa as no other.
Miriam Makeba (1932-2008) was an inspiration to musicians all over the world and a delight for international audiences. Nonetheless she remained true to her South African musical roots. Forced into early exile in 1959 as a result of her involvement in the documentary indictment of Apartheid Come Back, Africa, Harry Belafonte helped her to gain entry to the USA where in 1962 she appeared at John F. Kennedy’s birthday party among other venues, and scored her first international hit with ‘Pata Pata’. Finding herself in the sights of the FBI following her marriage to Black Panther activist Stokely Carmichael in 1968, she decided to settle in Guinea where she continued to fight the white Apartheid regime in her native land.
Making use of rare documentary footage and a plethora of interviews, this film portrays the life of this exceptional artiste and her music; a performer who, for more that fifty years, never failed to created a stir wherever she went. The film includes testimonials from friends, relatives and colleagues – both young proponents of African music as well as those who have known and cherished Miriam Makeba since her earliest beginnings in the dance halls of Cape Town. –Berlinale
Mika Juhani Kaurismäki (born 21 September 1955 in Orimattila, Finland) is a Finnish film director.
He is the elder brother of Aki Kaurismäki, and the father of Maria Kaurismäki who graduated from Tampere School of Art and Media in 2008 with her movie Sideline.
Mika Kaurismäki has lived in Brazil since approximately 1992 and has made several Brazilian-themed films, including Amazon, Tigrero, Sambólico, Rytmi, and Moro no Brasil. His film Brasileirinho is a 2005 musical documentary about traditional Brazilian choro music. —Wikipedia
Amazing stuff. OR maybe it was just the sheer synergy of having watched The Black Power Mix tapes and seeing Stokey Carmichael in there a few days ago and then finding out tonight that he married Miriam Makeba. Wow, wish I had seen her perform live when she was still alive. What an amazing voice and a magnificent woman.