Blantyre was locked in what was supposed to be a popcorn moment as Dikamawoko premiered Bell’a. There might not been popcorn at the screening, but the experience was quite memorable for most patrons.
Precious Kamputa, one of the patrons at the movie premiere, described it as a great movie, and it provides an alternative to Nollywood movies that have flooded the market.
“I loved every bit of it, I never imagined Malawi had such potential,” said Kamputa.
Bell’a is set at Chadzunda Trading Centre in Blantyre and takes on the HIV and Aids stigma.
The movie centres on Bell’a, a secondary school student who remains virtuous and focused despite meeting various challenges such as her teacher taking advantage over her and being discriminated against because she is friends with an Aids patient.
The film was written and directed by TawongaTaddjaNkhonjera and is a collaboration between Dikamawoko Arts and boNGO Worldwide.
It stars big screen debutants Vinjeru Kamanga, Chimwemwe Mkwezalamba and Tony Khoza, with wonderful performances by Hope Chisanu, Joyce Mhango Chavula and Tereza Mirovicova.
The movie successfully tackles HIV issues by eliminating the cliché of “preaching the HIV gospel” formula.
The movie includes some comic elements which makes it exciting.
And the inclusion of the character, Kalilore, gives it a high-school flick touch to it which makes it even appealing to a young audience.
Although the story could have been stronger, B’ellais one of the movies that is well directed and this is evident in the way the actors execute out their roles.
The primiere was graced by human rights veteran Vera Chirwa and it was supported by acts by Muhanya and Dikamawoko Arts, and spoken word poetry by YankhoSeunda.