Documentary looks at Nelson Mandela’s relationship with music
“Music you can’t stop. It goes everywhere.” – Nelson Mandela
Music for Mandela is an uplifting documentary sewn together with beautiful cinematography. The film highlights the power music had on the late Nelson Mandela and the nation of South Africa.
The first moments of the documentary briefly detail Mandela’s life before his prison sentence. There’s a juxtaposition of images of war and South Africa’s rougher times draped in front of a blue sky and brightly coloured landscapes shown many times throughout this film. Not only is this captivating, but adds beautiful scenery as well.
Clips of people dancing, interviews with musicians and vintage footage of Mandela make up for the majority of the documentary. We’re shown how South Africa remained positive throughout the struggle of Mandela’s imprisonment and how people would obtain their music about Mandela, as most of it was banned at the time.
One of Mandela’s closest friends and prison mates, Eddie Daniels, adds an in-depth look at the humble nature of Mandela. Another highlight is the interview with one of Mandela’s grandsons, Bambatha Mandela. He notes how he was the only child Mandela got to raise as he was imprisoned while his children were growing up. The film showcases Bambatha’s hip-hop talent as he raps an a capella honouring his grandfather.
Once the story reaches past Mandela’s release from prison, the film uncovers his angelic dance moves and shows how they are mimicked among local pop culture, while also revealing some of Mandela’s favourite tunes.
Words By. Matthew Anness