Independence

We had one of the longest liberation struggles in Africa, with a war that lasted 13 years. During those years we experienced the struggle in many parts of Angola and of the world. We weren’t just a generation of young people with revolutionary ideas. We were ordinary men and women, of several generations, from different regions of Angola and from different walks of life. This is our memory.

  • Mário Bastos
    Director
    Triângulo, Alambamento, Kiari
  • Mário Bastos
    Writer
    Triângulo, Alambamento, Kiari
  • Conceição Neto
    Writer
  • Paulo Lara
    Writer
  • Jorge Cohen
    Producer
    Afripedia Angola, Triângulo, Alambamento,
  • Paulo Lara
    Producer
  • Kalaf Epalanga
    Key Cast
  • Elisangela Rita
    Key Cast
  • Victor Gama
    Composer
    Outros Rituais Mais ou Menos, Outras Frases, O Gato Preto
  • Kamy Lara
    Director of Photography
    Maison Close
  • Gernot Fuhrmann
    Sound
    Black Out, A Vida Invisível, Animal City, Everyday, The Deep Blue Sea,
  • Project Title (Original Language):
    Independência
  • Project Type:
    Documentary
  • Genres:
    Drama, History, war, liberation struggle, colonialism, Angola
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 50 minutes 7 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    August 1, 2015
  • Production Budget:
    500,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    Angola
  • Country of Filming:
    Angola
  • Language:
    Portuguese
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16:9
  • Film Color:
    Black & White and Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    No
Director Biography - Mário Bastos

He was born in Luanda in 1986. He discovered his love for photography with Vitório Henriques one of the first film makers in the country. In 2004, he went to the USA where he was trained in cinema in New York and San Francisco. 
In 2009 he made a short film called “Alambamento” ("Bride's price"), presented at several international film festivals. In 2010, with Jorge Cohen and Tchiloia Lara he set up the production company Geração 80. In the same year he joined the project “Angola – Pathways to Independence” as the person responsible for technical issues. 
Mário believes in Angolan cinema and he is fighting for it to be more than just a dream, he believes it should be part and parcel of our everyday existence.
“Independence”, his first full-length film, brought together his two greatest interests: history and cinema.

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Director Statement

Like most people of my generation, I had very little knowledge of our past. We were taught to be and to react in the present. The few reflections on the past were shared by our elders always with that added dose of nostalgia and bitterness. I began to want to know better the people and the ideas of those who fought for the independence of our country. 
Working six years on the project Angola – Pathways to Independence, with access to the Documentation Centre of Associação Tchiweka was essential for the making of this documentary. The narrative and aesthetics of the film are very much based on my experience of those years, living amidst the memories of those who gave their testimonies and the archive materials. Reading a newspaper about the imprisonment of those involved in "the process of the fifty", listening to a recording of Che Guevara meeting with Angolan nationalists in the Congo, or seeing photos of everyday life in guerrillas' bases, I always got emotional. For this reason, in the maps, photos, documents, newspapers and letters in the film, you can feel this search, this revelation and meeting up with the past, after over 40 years. The film is made from the point of view of the generation that participated in the struggle; they are the ones sharing their memories. The narrator's intervention is also in this tone of someone who looks back and reflects over those times, and wonders "WHAT DO WE REMEMBER OF OUR STRUGGLE?"
The film concluded, I hope that it's possible to create a dialogue between generations that participated in the struggle and those born after 1975.
It's time to look back at our past with our feet firmly in the present, and to reflect on where we are and who we are, as a country, 40 years after our Independence.