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19-26 September

ttff/16 future critics: sugars (jafta propella)

Wilfred Quamina-Student, Ken Gordon School of Journalism and Communication Studies

Sugars is a poor girl who appears to be the bread winner of her family. She does housekeeping in what seems to be a guest house or institution. The director leaves us to guess at this. She has learnt from her mother’s experience and she is ambitious and diligent.

Sugars, despite the instant gratification that her name suggests, has learnt to defer present satisfaction for future benefit. On this day she arrives at her job and learns two things about a friend/colleague at work – one, that she was fired, and, two, she was secretly involved in a threesome with guests. The two revelations are not necessarily related. This morning too, she realizes that money she was saving for her registration at a school was taken by her mother who is a recovering addict, so she arrives at work disappointed and angry.

The plot is simple. To do or not to do.
Sugars perceives herself as a morally upstanding person but circumstances and opportunity have conspired to test her virtue. The film gradually builds up to her decision: Does necessity justify immorality? This film, though short passes the “Bechel” gender test. It has a number of female characters, some of who are named, and they speak to each other on topics other than a man. The film is also engaging and creates a sense of expectancy.

There is an overarching morality to this film. Even the musical theme, The German monk Martin Luther’s hymn Ein Fest Berg (A Mighty Fortress Is Our God).
The film is a study in human nature. ‘Human Nature 10I.’ It calls you to the jury seat. Would you consider Sugars weak if she falls, or strong if she stands? Milton in his epic poem “Paradise Lost” has God saying of Adam and Eve “I made them sufficient to have stood, but free to fall.”
Watch the film. Be the jury.


—Published on 26th September 2016.

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