New Namibian movie sets women on fire

16 August 2019
Author   Leonore Tjikune
Producers of the new #LANDoftheBRAVE movie released the official trailer on August 8th at Ster-Kinekor in Windhoek.  Go online and take a look (namibinsider.com). 
The exciting and edgy teaser for the movie is outstanding; it promises the film, soon to be released next month, will be even better.
The crime-thriller, directed and written by Namibian Tim Huebschle, and produced by David Benade, follows the life of a fearless, hard-hitting female cop, Elize de Wee, played by Meisie Willemse, who, with hidden demons from her own past, tries to capture a serial killer who is preying on local woman and girls.
The exhilarating on-screen whodunnit saga is inspired by old-school crime stories, the Namibian culture and society, and a nod to Namibia’s past encounter with the so-called, ‘B1 butcher’.
During the Q&A session after the screening, it was recalled that the creators of the movie were not interested in how things [in the film industry] were already done, but were interested in how they could be done. 
Huebschle, who has directed and worked on numerous other successful movie projects over the years, such as:   Rider without a Horse, Looking for Ilonga, Dead River and Another Summer Day, said it took him twelve years to develop the film as he elaborated on the inspiration behind the film.
“The film tagline, ‘facing the ghosts of your past is like trying to catch a serial killer who can’t be caught’, emphasizes that in Namibia I think we struggle a little bit with the past and so I found a way or means of sort of integrating and dealing with the past in a way that’s not too heavy but at the same time asking important questions,” he said.
When questioned by the Windhoek Observer about why he chose a female lead, the writer and director responded, “Namibia has a challenge when it comes to gender-based violence… and it’s another sort of angle to have an idea of how you can tell a story that is appealing across borders in society and especially empowering a female cop that sort of pushes through this very line and deals with a lot of challenges. That felt right.” 
The talented script writer further added, “In the first draft, the lead was actually a male character but it didn’t quite have the sizzle and especially since the victims in the movie are women, it felt like a better connection to have a woman stand up against that particular serial killer.” 
The Windhoek Observer also spoke to female lead Meisie Willemse, who is a fulltime social worker, about her experience with the film. She said playing the role of Elize was a dream and she hopes her performance inspires other woman and girls. 
“It was one of my bucket list wishes, to portray the role of a maverick police officer. So, I can tick it off finally.... The inspiration [for the character] comes from a female police inspector that I work with. I have always admired her strength and her ability to take charge.  She gets things done and has a no-nonsense attitude.  These aspects shaped my view of the character.”
Asked what women would take away from seeing the movie, Willemse responded, “It is my opinion that women of all ages will benefit from Elize.  Hopefully, it will inspire them to take control of their lives and determine their own destiny.”
Cast members said they were excited to be a part of a Namibian film made locally.
“It’s [the film] Namibian and we’re speaking Afrikaans. Colored people are being represented alongside everyone else who is a part of Namibian society.  This was very big for me personally because I have not seen someone like me, being portrayed like that on screen,” female cast member Khadijah Mouton said. 
Those who attended were excited and intrigued by the film. The crowd viewing the trailer literally could not sit still in their seats while watching nor hide the anticipation on their faces as the trailer transitioned into different scenes.
Other lead characters in the movie are; Shivute, played by Armas Shivute, Piet Potgieter- Pieter Greeff, Dr. Franz Schneider- Ralf Bol, Cherry- Khadijah Mouton, Charmaine- Chantell Uiras, Maureen- Felicity Celento, Suiker- Chridon, amongst others.
The film is expected to premier on 10th October 2019.

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The Windhoek Observer is an English-language weekly newspaper, published in Namibia by Paragon Investment Holding. It is the country's oldest and largest circulating weekly.

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