Leaving Mandela Park
Long documentary that wants to show another face of South Africa. Mandela Park is one of the disconsolate townships surrounding Cape Town. Poverty and crime have the black inhabitants in a stranglehold. But not everyone is held back by this.
Filmmaker Saskia Vredeveld, who grew up in South Africa, portrays five young people who use their special talents to get ahead. Pinkie, who studies hard 'to be able to live in a brick house' and does classical ballet to make life lighter. Cynthia, who uses her saxophone to try and blank out the gang wars around her and Guava, who raps 'Mama, where are you?' on the street. Siseko, who escaped domestic violence and wants to become a famous opera singer. And shepherd boy Siswe, who wants to be admitted to university.
These youngsters' versatility and hope is a metaphor of the challenge the whole nation is facing, now that it tries to shake free from the downward spiral of poverty and violence.