6.8/10
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9 user 46 critic

I Am Not a Witch (2017)

Following a banal incident in her local village, 8-year old girl Shula is accused of witchcraft. After a short trial she is found guilty, taken into state custody and exiled to a witch camp... See full summary »

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Coming Soon

In theaters September 7.

Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 15 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Benfors 'Wee Do ... Blind Child
Boyd Banda ... Man in Courtroom
Kalundu Banda ... Man in Courtroom
Boniventure ... Hotel Staff
Brisky ... Herself - Hip Hop Singer
Patricia Carreira ... Tourist
Patricia Chaambwa ... Blind Child
Mureene Chaba ... Man in Courtroom
Janet Chaile ... Witch
Felix Chibole ... Villager
Chichi ... Tourist
Martha Chig'Ambo ... Witch
Masanbo Chikunga ... Motorbike Driver
Loveness Chilndo ... Witch
Joyce Chilombo ... Witch
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Storyline

Following a banal incident in her local village, 8-year old girl Shula is accused of witchcraft. After a short trial she is found guilty, taken into state custody and exiled to a witch camp in the middle of a desert. At the camp she takes part in an initiation ceremony where she is shown the rules surrounding her new life as a witch. Like the other residents, Shula is tied to a ribbon which is attached to a coil that perches in a large tree. She is told that should she ever cut the ribbon, she'll be cursed and transformed into a goat.

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Drama

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7 September 2018 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nem vagyok boszorkány  »

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2.39 : 1
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User Reviews

 
I Am Not A Witch creatively conveys female subjugation through magical surrealism.

At the time of this review, this film attained the elusive 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, so naturally expectations were exceedingly high. Did Nyoni's feature debut fulfil my thirst for perfection? Not quite. An incident occurs in a remote Zambian village which leaves the villagers to believe that a young girl is a witch, consequently resulting in her being sent to a witches' camp. Contemporary, captivating and surprisingly comical, it's an indie flick that certainly meshes several dichotomies within a tonally inconsistent narrative. Illustrating the modernisation of Zambia but retaining the superstitious and traditional views of an ancient world. The segregation of (typically) older women into camps positioned outside of society is certainly a bleak perspective into the apparent sexism that arises within various cultures. Male characters certainly have more power and authority over females who are seemingly attached to strands of ribbon as if resembling prisoners. It's an intriguing and illusory picture that convincingly enables Nyoni to showcase both her artistry and viewpoint. Enigmatic long takes, a commanding central performance from Mulubwa and gorgeous cinematography by Gallego, there's various aspects to adore in what is a technically flawless film. The utilisation of Vivaldi's composed classical music juxtaposes the chaotic traditions that are being upheld within this community, plus...I love me some Vivaldi. It's unfortunate that I found this film slightly tedious to watch, and that's mainly down to the narrative. The clashing of dark deadpan humour and surreal dramatic perspectives did not blend well for me. It was a disorientating experience fuelled by ambiguity and vivid imagery that just wasn't fully comprehensible. It does occasionally lean towards style over substance. Although, this is still impressive work from Nyoni considering it's her feature debut. A promising career is ahead of her, yet it just wasn't able to cast a spell on me completely.


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