Florida Film Festival
Tanzania – A Friendship Journey
Directed by: SYLVIA CAMINER
USA, 2011, 117 MIN
In English and Swahili with English subtitles
Early in this lushly photographed film, Kristen, a young American, born-with-a-silver-spoon-in-her-mouth shouts, “Shut up—there’s a giraffe?” She finds herself in the African savannah because her brilliant scientist friend, Venance, has invited her to join him as he returns to his homeland of Tanzania after a 10-year absence. Like many young Americans, she is clueless. About geography, about Africa, about disease, about poverty. And, as it turns out, about the true nature of joy. “Their skills are of another tangent,” her ever-patient friend responds when she doesn’t understand his people or their motivations. As she sees the village of Moshi through his eyes, her ignorance is replaced with the kind of wisdom one only gets through the personal experience of pain and suffering. Her penchant for material pleasures is replaced by a deeper, spiritual joy. Her exasperation and impatience are replaced by compassion and charity. She grows up—and as you watch this touching film—you will, too.