Banned in Kenya for its nuanced depiction of a lesbian romance, ‘Rafiki’ was a major discovery at Cannes, the first Kenyan film to be shown in Un Certain Regard. From director Wanuri Kahiu, this is a tender and neon-drenched delight about self-discovery. Tomboy Kena (Samantha Mugatsia) is happy to be accepted as ‘one of the boys’, waiting for the exam results that will determine her future. Her shopkeeper father is vying election, facing off against a slick businessman. When she meets the rival’s daughter, rainbow-dreaded Ziki (Sheila Munyiva), the two women forge a Romeo and Juliet romance. Generous with its characters and infused with afropop visuals, ‘Rafiki’ is a quietly revolutionary film from a country where homosexuality is still criminalised.

Directed by
Runtime 82 Minutes
Release date 2019