DA YIE – Anthony Nti and Chingiz Karibekov use Ghana’s beauty to instil the audience with confusion

Director/ writer Anthony Nti and writer Chingiz Karibekov create an insightful perspective of child trafficking in Da Yie, a film follows two children and their brush with kidnapping. Set in Ghana where youth kidnappings are on the rise, the issue is not explained through statistics or graphs, but as an inconspicuous and covert operation.  Awarded the Grand Prix at the 42nd International Film Festival Clermont Ferrand; Nti and Karibekov enlisted in the Ghanian community to star in the film as the ultimate form of respect thus creating a beautifully shot and culturally respected short.

Despite the serene scenery displayed in the film, Nti and Karibekov do not romanticize kidnapping but use Ghana’s beauty to instil the audience with confusion and a tinge of uneasiness for what Prince and Matilda’s fate. Child trafficking victims are sometimes described as easily identifiable, but Nti and Karibekov expose a much-needed portrayal of alternate methods used by predators. Child traffickers aren’t always faceless monsters that snatch screaming children in the dead of night; they’re disciplined in the art of manipulation and assimilation. Similar to Bogah, the false personas devised by kidnappers create a complicated atmosphere diverting civilians weary of the situation to hesitate when taking action for fear of making false accusations.

Despite the serene scenery displayed in the film, Nti and Karibekov do not romanticize kidnapping but use Ghana’s beauty to instil the audience with confusion and a tinge of uneasiness for what Prince and Matilda’s fate.

Karibekov and Nti write Bogah and Ghana to appear as entities unbeknownst as to how they’ve become corrupted. The pair cleverly use Ghana’s beautiful landscapes to distract audiences from Bogah’s malicious intent; similar to how the countries diaspora diverts from it’s increasing child trafficking rate. Bogah’s epiphany, discovered far too late, is the effect Da Yie disperses among audiences. Da Yie doesn’t disgrace Ghana but works to better protect its individuals by creating awareness for a just cause before the problem has matured.

Ghanaian-born Belgian director and writer Anthony Nti graduated from the Royal Institute of Theatre, Cinema and Sound in Brussels. He then launched his directing debut in commercials, music videos, and shorts; and his video for Yung Mavu becoming an internet phenomenon days post-release. Nti success continued to skyrocket with his first short films Kwaku and Only Us together winning seven awards and first prize at the esteemed Zanzibar Film Festival. Born in Karaganda, Kazakhstan and raised in Belgium, Chingiz Karibekov’s love for film carried him to graduate with distinction from the Royal Institute of Theatre in Cinema and Sound in creative writing. He followed a similar path as his film partner beginning in commercials and video clips and eventually creating his feature-length film Postcard earning the second prize at the Sam Spiegel Film lab. Alongside his film portfolio, Karibekov’s television show is currently in development and is selected for the Torino SeriesLab. Karibekov and Nti met while studying film in Brussels a friendship quickly formed between the two. Together the two have written Da Yie and their award-winning short film BOI which won the Critic Award, Best Debut at the Leuven Film Festival and the Jury and Public Prize at the Ghent Film Festival.

This must see film was selected for the Student Academy Awards and has qualifying to be considered for the Oscars, a place where it deserves to get to! A must see film, with outstanding cinematography, superb directing and lovely acting by the two little stars. Mark our words Anthony Nti and writer Chingiz Karibekov have a long and wonderful film career ahead of them.

Yasmeen Johnson

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