Mami Wata 12A

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From the archive

This film was last shown on 23 November 2023

Shot in striking black and white, Mami Wata is a futuristic, genre-bending fable that brings a West African deity to vibrant life.

In the matriarchal ocean village of Iyi, West African water deity Mami Wata (‘Mother Water’) rules via an intermediary, revered village leader Mama Efe (Rita Edochie). But after a tragedy upsets the harmony of village life, unrest breaks out despite her best efforts, setting off a violent clash of ideologies and a crisis of faith for the people of Iyi.

The audacious, ambitious third feature from C.J. ‘Fiery’ Obasi – director of O-Town and Ojuju and one of a new wave of Nigerian filmmakers – Mami Wata fuses spiritual beliefs with inter-generational tensions, bringing mythology, fantasy, and folklore together in one confidently realised vision. Superbly produced, it uses Sundance Special Jury award-winning cinematography by Lílis Soares, a hypnotic, otherworldly score by Tunde Jegede and oceanic sound design to transport us to a place outside time.


C. J. Obasi
1 hour 47 minutes
West African pidgin English, with English subtitles
Evelyne Ily Juhen, Kelechi Udegbe, Uzoamaka Aniunoh


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