NKG Presents - A Coretta Production - 'Breakfast in Kisumu'
Directed/Produced by: Rebecca Achieng Ajulu-Bushell
Executive Producer: Raphael Laurent
Cinematography by: Ollie Bradley-Baker
Editing: Mdhamiri Á Nkemi, Ollie Bradley-Baker, Rebecca Achieng Ajulu-Bushell
Sound Design: Harry McSwaine, Ollie Bradley-Baker
Music: Sheku Kanneh-Mason
Shot across 16mm, VHS, DV, and Digital, Breakfast in Kisumu is a personal homage to the 20-year journey of renowned professor and political activist Rok Ajulu. Filmed across 6 countries between Europe and Africa, with a proxy-archival quality, it follows Rok’s account of his struggles as an exiled freedom fighter of the post-colonial, apartheid era. In conversation with his daughter - he tells of his numerous deportations, prison sentences, and academia. As Rok recounts the collapse of the apartheid regime, Breakfast in Kisumu shows us a homecoming; his journey back to Africa for the transition of the African National Congress (ANC) from a liberation movement into a governing party, his marriage into the Sisulu Family, and the continental significance of 1994.
Rok Ajulu (1950-2016) was a leading Kenyan academic and activist who was involved in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa. This short documentary is his daughter Rebecca’s tribute to her father. The film’s leitmotif is an intimate conversation between father and daughter that she recorded shortly before Ajulu discovered he was terminally ill. He talks about the many twists and turns in a life in which he fought for freedom, but found himself in prison or exile on many occasions. They cover his time as an activist student in 1970s Kenya, his studies in Bulgaria, his first academic position in England, and his close ties with South Africa.
Onscreen, his daughter extends the conversation by traveling to the locations he talks about. She and cameraman Ollie Bradley-Baker capture these places in impressionistic style and in a variety of formats, from grainy 16mm to pin-sharp digital footage. Along the way, we discover that her attempt to get to know the man who was only sporadically present in her life is also her way of sharing him with the world.