The Gordon Institute for Performing and Creative Arts will host a screening of Rehad Desai’s much anticipated documentary film about the tragedy at Marikana, Miners Shot Down. The screening will take place on Wednesday 23 April at Hiddingh Hall, followed by a discussion with panelists Professor Sakhela Buhlungu (Dean of Humanities, UCT), Alex Dodd (independent writer and PhD Fellow: Archive and Public Culture Research Initiative, UCT) and Associate Professor Jay Pather (GIPCA Director).
In March 2014, Miners Shot Down was awarded the prestigious Camera Justitia Award at the Movies that Matter Festival in The Hague, and the Václav Havel Jury Award at the international human rights documentary film festival, One World, in Prague.
In August 2012, mineworkers in one of South Africa’s biggest platinum mines began a wildcat strike for better wages. Six days into the strike, the police used live ammunition to brutally suppress the strike, killing 34 and injuring many more. The police insisted that they shot in self- defense. Miners Shot Down tells a different story – one that unfolds in real time over seven days, like a ticking time bomb.
The film weaves together the central point-of-view of three strike leaders, with compelling police footage, television archive archive and interviews with lawyers representing the miners in the ensuing commission of inquiry into the massacre. What emerges is a tragedy that arises out of the deep fault lines in South Africa’s nascent democracy, of enduring poverty and a twenty year old, unfulfilled promise of a better life for all.
A campaigning film, beautifully shot, sensitively told, with a haunting soundtrack, Miners Shot Down leaves audiences with an uncomfortable view of those that profit from minerals in the global South.
This screening will take place on Wednesday 23 April at 17:30, Hiddingh Hall, University of Cape Town Hididngh Campus, and is free.