Cinema Dadaab (2018)

Dadaab is a dreamlike place forgotten by the rest of the world: a huge refugee camp on Kenya’s border to Somalia. The refugees cannot leave, but they let their minds escape by going to cinema to watch films and to dream of other countries – which they only know of by watching films. But the luxury of films is available for men only. Women of Dadaab are too busy to watch movies – too busy to dream of another kind of life. They are confined to their roles as wives and mothers.

The main protagonist of the film is Abdikafi Mohamed, the manager of the cinema, who dreams of a life in the West as a film star. Other characters include Osman with a lovely past in Mogadishu; his wife Dainab who would not want yet another pregnancy; and Sidow, a healer-tailor. The men’s lives are interlinked by the cinema. But Dainab, Osman’s wife does not even know know what men do at the cinema.

Could the change start from the cinema? Watching films, Abdikafi has seen how equal men and women seem in many countries. What if he built a separate section for women in Cinema Dadaab so women could join to watch films?

Production notes

Director Kati Juurus will be present at the screening on 24 September at Andorra at 20.45, and on 29 September at Korjaamo Kino Kulmasali at 14.30.

  • Orig. title: Cinema Dadaab
  • Language: English, Somali
  • Subtitles: English
  • Distribution: YLE
  • Cinematography: Jouni Soikkeli
  • Editing: Kristiina Nisula