On Saturday at the African Film Festival Australia, as part of the short film series, Money Tree by Hawanatu Bangura was screened.
Money Tree is short animation set in Africa about a young boy who tries to escape poverty by planting an orchid of stolen money. I love the simplicity and depth to the film. The simplicity was in the story line and illustrations. The depth was in the message of the film.
There was an accent within the film which seemed very Australian. I became very curious about the origin of the film. Then during the credits I figured out that Money Tree was produced in Australia. My curiousity turned into contentment. This was the kind of work I had been waiting to see. Something produced on Australian soil with Africa written all over it!
Emerging filmmaker Hawanatu Bangura was born in Sierra Leone and migrated to Australia when she was thirteen fleeing from the civil war.
She is currently studying a double degree in Social Work and Social Science. Her experiences in Social work triggered her to makes films highlighting social issues. Apart from Money Tree, Hawanatu has written and directed two other short films titled Alhaji and Not Good Enough.
I really hope that Hawanatu makes more films like Money Tree. I think it would be a great series, especially for children teaching them cultural values and practices.