Director: Chiwetel Ejiofor
Year Released: 2019
William (Maxwell Simba), who lives with his mother Agnes (Aïssa Maïga), father Trywell (Ejiofor) and sister Annie (Lily Banda) in Malawi, sneaks into the school library (even though his family can no longer afford to send him to school there) to study energy in order to build a windmill for his Pop to help irrigate his farm (all the villagers are starving due to lack of rain). It's the feature film debut for actor-turned-filmmaker Ejiofor, and he does a decent job: he captures both the good and the bad of the African nation (it's gorgeous ... but then there's the poverty) and his lead is both a determined and sympathetic individual: Trywell resists any sort of change or technological innovation, but is delighted when his son's plan works. The pacing could have used a little adjustment, but what do you expect from an actor who's spent most of his career doing arthouse cinema? Also, and maybe this is just me being self-involved, but isn't it nice to see a movie praising education and the importance of reading and learning? What a concept.