Sssekukulu Premiere: When Time Stood Still and 2 Hours Felt Like Mere Minutes.
What comes to your mind when you think of a Christmas Film?
Well, on the 8th of December, 2023, we got served a Ugandan movie, the first of its kind; Ssekukkulu; A Ugandan Christmas, and it was everything we imagined and perhaps, so much more.
Producer Sharon Ishimwe, who doubles as the director, and co-director Gerald Namanya managed to take us on a nostalgic journey to relive our Christmas experiences from when we were younger. From the excitement of drinking festive soda to that one drunkard uncle who is always causing a scene, a lot of what most of us would term as “Christmas those days” was featured in this movie.
However, before we walk into the dark cinema hall and glue our eyes to the bright huge screen, let me lend you an eye at what we found waiting for us just outside, on the Acacia Mall rooftop.
As you turned the corner from the lift to the night breeze of the rooftop, the merry tunes of an excellent DJ and energetic MCee welcomed your ears. The red carpet was graced with style and Glamour from the cast, crew, and fans who were all here for the experience. Camera lights flattered the attendees and loud adoring murmurs from the fans brushed through the air, there was a cocktail booth that never stopped giving…ho ho ho! Santa was in a refreshing mood that day, you could say!
1hr into the merry-making and the vibrant Producer Sharon Ishimwe clad in a bright yellow dress officially welcomed us all to the event and prepared our hearts, eyes, and ears for what was about to go down inside...” She expressed gratitude and acknowledged the industry's pioneers. "We stand on the shoulders of those who built this for generations. Their hard work, often unseen, paves the way for cinema premieres. Thanks to the media for their love – TV, radio, newspapers. Your constant support means the world to us."
Excited audience members taking a self.
With bright smiles and eager eyes, revelers waltzed into the cinema hall, most of them in pairs like a scene from Noah's Ark! Those of us who didn't have a plus one were still cheered up by the fact that it was a full house in attendance and the warmth of the audience’s festive smiles and laughs were more than enough to make everyone feel at home inside the 195 seater hall.
When the film finally started, it was one big name after the other as a plethora of amazing actors were present before us on the big screen.
The best part is, that none of them were disappointed. Kudos to the casting director because every role felt, not just like a paid performer, but rather, like a relative you know delivering to you a memory from your own experience.
The comedic submissions were top notch and the drama was well balanced with light moments that would have the audience laughing, wincing, and grinning in perfect synchrony like an orchestra band.