The film's theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Tanaka Mkwananzi|
|Written by||Tanaka Mkwananzi|
|Music by||Zvanaka Godwin|
Dzokera kumba (Gaullican: Séparation) is a 1989 Rwizikuran historical romantic drama, written and directed by Tanaka Mkwananzi, and produced by the Royal Rwizikuran Film Studio, it starred Patrice Seromba and Atidaishe Mukonoweshuro as the couple who sought to stay in Yekumavirira (present-day Ahirengeïe), even as they were caught in the crossfire of the Mabifian-Rwizikuran War as a result of their opposing religions.
Upon its release in 1989, Dzokera kumba was quickly met with critical acclaim, resulting in it winning the béco aùreo at the 1989 Montecara Film Festival, and in Mkwananzi becoming a prominent director. As a result of this, TBD agreed to distribute the film internationally, with the film being released internationally the following year. Dzokera kumba was the first film from Rwizikuru to win the béco aùreo, and so far the only film to have won the award. Today, the film continues to be popular, as it illustrates how wars can destroy and divide families who previously lived side by side.
Farai Ingabire (Atidaishe Mukonoweshuro), a Sotirian veRwizi woman is living with her husband, Mugwaneza Ingabire (Patrice Seromba), who is an Irfani Barobyi, and their two children (Ashavasda and Vhenekerayi) in Port Vaugeois (present day TBD, Mabifia) on the eve of the Mabifian-Rwizikuran War. Despite the growing conflict between the central government of Rwizikuru against the separatist Yekumavirira Liberation Front, and the growing anti-Irfanic sentiment against the Irfanic community in Yekumavirira by the Sotirians, they had been able to live peacefully for "a few years."
When Mabifia attacked Rwizikuru in October 1968, thereby starting the war, Mugwaneza Ingabire finds himself under suspicion, as due to his religion and ethnicity, he is seen as a threat to Rwizikuran sovereignty. Likewise, due to Farai's religion and ethnicity, she fears that she would be mistreated by the incoming government. When they consider leaving Port Vaugeois for a safer place in Rwizikuru, they realize that they would not be treated well by the locals and by the government, while if they left for Mabifia, they'd be imprisoned on account of being "Rwizikuran spies." As they cannot afford to go to Euclea or the Asterias, and because neither is willing to convert to the other religion, they realize that the only option would be to "fight to the death" to stay together and to remain in Yekumavirira (present-day Ahirengeïe).
Thus, Mugwaneza attempts to join the Royal Rwizikuran Armed Forces, in order to prove his loyalty to Rwizikuru and to fight alongside them for the land, but due to his religion, he is rejected, as they consider him to be a Mabifian spy. This leads to a police officer arresting Mugwaneza on charges of espionage, with Farai and her two children seeing Mugwaneza being dragged to a waiting truck: after he is thrown into the truck, it speeds off into the distance, leaving Farai to raise her two children alone.
Over the next couple months, she receives no information about her husband's whereabouts, leaving her worried for her future. At the same time, with Zorasani support, air raids over Port Vaugeois began to wreak havoc: in one of them, her home was nearly destroyed, but "miraculously," there were no injuries. Due to her marriage to an Irfanic man, the Sotirians "cast her out," while due to her religion, the Irfanis also cast her out, leaving her isolated.
In the middle of January, a letter finally arrived, informing Farai of her husband's whereabouts. While Farai is relieved at the news that her husband was still alive, upon finding out that he is serving a life sentence for espionage in Mutupo, Farai was outraged at her husband's treatment. She considered driving to Mutupo to try and meet with her husband "one last time," but as she was about to leave the house, a bomb destroyed her car, and damaged her home even further, and "severely injuring" Vhenekerayi Ingabire.
When she tried to get her daughter to the local clinic to get her treated, they refer her to the local hospital. However, the hospital rejects them, as they were full of people with similar injuries. As she tried to reach another hospital in Port Vaugeois to get her daughter treated, Vhenekerayi died from her wounds, leaving Farai distraught. After Takunda Chiroto gets her home, Farai sends a letter to Mugwaneza informing him of their daughter's death.
After her daughter was buried, she and her son abandon their home, fleeing to the house of "one of her few remaining friends," Takunda Chiroto, who takes Farai and Ashavasda in. By this point, the bombardment of the city grew more intense, with Farai and Ashavasda both fearing for their own safety. When Chiroto offered Farai a ticket to go to Sainte-Germaine, she considered it, before rejecting the offer, citing the vow made to her husband to stay in Yekumavirira. However, she allowed Chiroto to take Ashavasda to Sainte-Germaine, "so he may experience a childhood."
Thus, by March, Farai was now homeless, as Chiroto had left for Sainte-Germaine (although it later transpired that they only made it as far as Port Graham), and her home had been reduced to rubble by the enemy bombardment. As the Battle of Port Vaugeois raged on around her, Farai had a duty to assist the Rwizi forces in any way she could, in hopes that one day, she would be able to see her husband. However, later in the battle, she was hit by a Mabifian sniper, and was only saved by Irikidzayi, who transported her to a field hospital, who then referred her to a hospital in Port Graham, where she fell into a coma.
After waking up from the coma in May, she sees Takunda Chiroto, who inform her of the war's end, and the independence of Garambura. She also sees her son, still under Chiroto's protection. When asked of her husband's whereabouts, Chiroto informed her that "there is a population exchange, with Sotirians to come to Rwizikuru, while the Irfanis get to stay [in Yekumavirira]." Upon hearing this, she was heartbroken, as her husband was to be transferred to the other side.
In July, after recovering enough to be released from the hospital at Port Graham, she heads to the village of Tchinamano, with her son, which now finds itself on the Purple Line between Mabifia and Rwizikuru, in an effort to catch "one last glimpse" of her beloved before he crosses the border into Mabifia. After waiting for seven days, she sees her husband arrive: weakened by the internment in Mutupo, but still alive. After exchanging a long embrace, Mugwaneza and Farai bid each other goodbye, before Mugwaneza is escorted across the border by a CN peacekeeper.
The film concludes twenty years later, with Farai and Mugwaneza returning to the border at Tchinamano, with a grown-up Ashavasda by Farai's side, with Farai and Mugwaneza waving to each other across the border, still hopeful that they would one day come back together to their hometown.
- Patrice Seromba as Mugwaneza Ingabire
- Atidaishe Mukonoweshuro as Farai Ingabire
- Mazimpaka Habimana as Ashavasda Ingabire
- Anokosha Nkomo as Vhenekerayi Ingabire
- Nokutenda Muchena as Takunda Chiroto
- Irikidzayi Mawere as the recruiter and as the Rwizikuran soldier
- Chamunorwa Mahachi as the police officer
- Amose Mohlomi as the Mabifian sniper
- Ted Anderson as the CN peacekeeper