ABFF 2012: Best Films at the Festival
These must-see movies tackle a gamut of topics from Jamaican gang life to our soul food addiction.
Another movie that deserves attention is Better Mus Come. Directed by Storm Saulter, the film is set in 1970s Jamaica in the months leading up to the mass killing of suspected gang leaders by government soldiers. The event, known as the Green Bay Massacre, was a flash point in the island's wave of rampant street violence and federal corruption.
Saulter -- who honed his filmmaking chops as a longtime assistant of music-video director Little X -- tells the story of a romance between local gangster Ricky (Sheldon Shepherd) and Kemala (Nicole Sky Grey), a young girl from the other side of town. He tries to navigate an unforgiving life in Kingston as he gets caught up in a larger struggle for political power.
The film, which also stars Roger Guenveur Smith, has been making the rounds at several festivals, winning the top award at this year's Pan African Film Festival. "It isn't a movie glorifying the 'badman,' like so many other Jamaican films. It's really about the cause and effect of violence," Saulter told the Fader. "I also wanted to show the roots of today's gang conflicts in Jamaica, that the '70s were a starting point." At ABFF, Better Mus Come is in the running for the Grand Jury Prize for best screenplay, and Shepherd has been nominated for best actor. The film is being screened at ABFF on Thursday and Friday.