THE HOMES WE CARRY
Dokumentarfilm | 90 min | Deutsch, Portugiesisch, Englisch, Zulu
"A bittersweet, heartfelt debut feature from director Brenda Akele Jorde, The Homes We Carry explores a little-known chapter in Cold War geopolitical history. Using a single pan-generational family story as a lens, Jorde examines the lingering aftershocks of Communist East Germany’s dubious track record of recruiting migrant workers from socialist-friendly African “brother countries” to work as cheap labour. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, in the economic turbulence that followed German reunification, most of these foreign workers were suddenly surplus to requirement and unceremoniously sent home. Adding extra emotional drama to this sociopolitical history lesson, many visiting Africans had fallen in love with German women and started families with them, leaving behind children who they would not see again until years later.
World premiering at Dok Leipzig festival this week, Jorde’s film is not just about politics and economics, but also the psychological and cultural damage that these forces can inflict on families and on society as a whole. As an Afro-German herself, the director is interested in representation and identity, in degrees of blackness and different kinds of belonging. She probes these questions obliquely in a observational manner that never feels dry or didactic, always placing the personal before the political, and letting the overlap between the two speak for itself. An elegant lesson in empathy and light-touch storytelling, The Homes We Carry should draw plenty more festival offers after Leipzig, while its timely themes and tender tone will boost its chances for specialist art-house, TV and streaming slots."
Director, screenwriter: Brenda Akele Jorde | Co-directors: David-Simon Groß, Malte Wandel
Editing: Laura Espinel | Cinematography: David-Simon Groß | Producers: Florian Schewe, Miriam Henze
Music: Lenna Bahule | Sounddesign: Jakob Mäsel | Soundmix: Manuel Meichsner
Production company, world sales: Film Five GmbH (Germany)
Leipzig, 65. DOK Leipzig Internationales Leipziger Festival für Dokumentar- und Animationsfilm
17.10.2022 - 23.10.2022