IDFA X De Balie: Coconut Head Generation + Q&A

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Alain Kassanda
running time
France, Nigeria
English, French, Yoruba

The older generation sometimes disparagingly calls them “coconut heads” (or “brainless youth”), but the students at the University of Ibadan, the oldest in Nigeria, are anything but that. They follow up their visits to a campus film club with in-depth discussions about subjects such as feminism, migration, human rights, colonialism, and politics. The debate gets heated sometimes, but always stays focused on the subject.

Nigeria and its neighbouring countries face many issues. Unemployment and corruption are rife, freedom of expression is under threat, and student life is tough for many reasons. Alain Kassanda intercuts his observational shots of these passionate group discussions with atmospheric impressions of campus life full of commotion.

In the years that Kassanda films, from 2019 to 2021, students and their peers take to the barricades to resist police violence—there were even deaths at these protests in October 2020. This film, which shared the top prize at Cinéma du Réel, is a dynamic portrait of a generation of Nigerians using their intelligence and critical thinking to demand change.


After the screening, the filmmakers will join us on stage for a short Q&A with the audience.

Altijd als eerste op de hoogte van onze programmering, De Balie podcasts, Tv fragmenten en de nodige verdieping.