New generations are built through what they inherit from their forefather. The stories we tell today and how we tell them will shape the future of our children, their children and many generations to come. Cinema has been the most powerful weapon used to preserve and share a heritage, that be cultural or traditions. Cinema provides us with the power to understand, explore and build our own identities. Through cinema, we are able to see and understand what Africa was like after its independence struggle in the 60s, what the world looked like after the two world wars, what our ancestors did to survive when there was no car, airplanes or all the other commodities we have today. We cross through generations, to reshape and understand our past, build our present while we foresee our future.

Our rich and varied cultural heritage has a profound power to help build our nation. When Nelson Mandela said those words during a speech, he was referring to his nation of South Africa, but this is something that we can shape through the entire world. Learning to understand and embrace our differences by looking at our varied heritages is a weapon that we can use to connect and bring all of us together.

This year’s edition of the Rwanda film festival will look at how cinema can help us explore our heritage, but also to build something that will be used by future generation to understand their past, reshape their present and foresee their future. A selection of films from across the African continent and the African diaspora from around the world will be met an international list of films that explores and shows the heritage of many nations around the world. We explore the theme