Postcolonial Film Review of Unseen by Perivi Katjavivi
Unfolding more like a conversation than a narrative, 'The Unseen' follows the story of three wandering souls as they navigate the emotional and physical realities of post-colonial Namibia. First there is Marcus, an African American actor tasked with portraying one of Namibia’s historical leaders. Seeking authenticity in his craft, he embarks on an earnest research mission to unveil the true history of his character. Then there is Anu, a talented local musician who is having trouble negotiating between his influences and identity. Lastly, there is Sara, a depressed young woman uncertain of whether or not her environment provides anything worth living for.
“The Unseen is an entirely new kind of cinema, inventing for itself a new language, refusing to be trapped in the past or shaped by white or western film models the way many South African films still are. It’s one of the most exciting and visually beautiful films you’ll see this year.“ – Charles Blignaut, CityPress, South Africa
“Brilliant and refreshing. …. [Katjavivi’s] characters negotiate forces of neoimperial homogeneity in the present, while trying to make sense of the past. … This portrayal of life in the impact zone of post-colonialism and post-modernity has real substance and weight.“ – Sarah Dawson, Mail & Guardian, South Africa
“The Unseen is a powerful commentary on what it means to be a young person in modern-day Africa.” – Screen Africa
“A cinematic Namibian love letter to Fanon” – Hans-Christian Mahnke, AfricAvenir
“A strong film of substance, a film debating issues relevant to Namibian society and the continent at large. We need more of this.” - Bishop Shekutaamba Nambala, ELCRN, Namibia
Thanks to the Postcolonial Studies Association