A FILM ABOUT SURVIVING WOMEN DRIVING SOCIAL CHANGE IN THE RWANDA OF TODAY.
A documentary by Leona Goldstein
Rwanda 2015 | 84 minutes | colour
"BEST FILM" at the China Women´s Film Festival 2016
"AUDIENCE AWARD" at the International Women´s Film Festival Cologne 2016
"BEST FILM AWARD" at the MIC Genero Festival Mexico 2015
"BEST HUMAN RIGHTS FILM 2015" of the city of Dresden. MOVE IT! Filmfestival, Dresden, Germany
"PLATINUM AWARD: BEST FEATURE LENGHT DOCUMENTARY 2016" at International Film Festival on womens rights and social issues, Indonesia
"BEST DIRECTOR" at Berlin Independent Film Festival 2016
"BEST DOCUMENTARY" 2nd award at the 12 month Film festival
"BEST DIRECTOR" at CINE WOMEN 2015
What sounds like a feminist utopia, is in Rwanda reality: Since 2008 women form the majority in the rwandan parliament - up to now a global novelty. 20 years after the genocide the country is considered as one of the most progressive countries of the African continent – quick economic growth, technological forerunner position, and a pulsating network of women-activists who in the fight for reconciliation and equal rights have created new spaces for women. Which influence does a politics dominated by women have on conflict resolution strategies? And how does the young generation of today handle the aftermaths of the genocide and the sexualized war crimes?
Our entrance to this world is through the work of Godelieve and Florida - community organisers and powerful forces. God Is Not Working on Sunday! reflects the women’s appeal to direct action at the individual and community levels. Humans cannot simply wait for other forces – godly or governmental – to provide a better future for them. We must do it for ourselves.
Twenty years after the genocide, Rwanda today is celebrated as one of the most progressive countries on the continent. It has fast economic growth, a leading IT sector, and the first parliament in the world ruled by a female majority. Twenty years earlier, women were not allowed to talk publicly without the permission of their husbands. Rwandan women from all walks of life came together and began organizing collectively to create social change.
“God Is Not Working On Sunday, Eh!” tells the story of Godelieve and Florida, two women amongst many Rwandan women who are working to overcome the traumata of genocide through organizing activities and services for individuals and communities, both survivors and perpetrators. Despite their divided histories, these women are struggling for a common goal: reconciliation, equal rights and political empowerment for women. Without financial means or any specific training, they have managed to build a vibrant, independent women’s network that today plays a decisive part in reconstructing their communities, reconciling relationships, and driving social change.
The film follows Godelieve and Florida as they pursue their visions determined and self-confident, through the patriarchal structures. Through an close, long-term observing portrait, it narrates from silence to talking, from traumatic-shock to activism and demand for equal rights. political participation.
“Hutu” and “Tutsi” are inadequate terms to define their identities. Both are survivors of the conflict. Despite their different realities, their paths cross again and again; Florida and Godelieve meet regularly at the Twese Hamwe network meetings, the umbrella organization for all women’s projects in Rwanda. The film is told from the women’s perspectives, using only their unscripted dialogue, sharing with the viewer a complex insight into the social reconstruction of Rwandan civil society after its collapse.
The title of the film - God Is Not Working on Sunday! - reflects the women’s appeal to direct action at the individual and community levels. The sarcastic, rhetorical question from Florida conveys her belief that Rwandans cannot simply wait for other forces – godly or governmental – to provide a better future for them. They have to take it into their own hands.