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Movie of the Week

 ‘The Woman King’ comes to Netflix

An epic movie shot in SA, about a female-led struggle for freedom in the Dahomey kingdom, is now streaming on Netflix.

The Woman king is a film about the Agojie, the all-female warrior unit that protected the West African kingdom of Dahomey from the 17th to 19th centuries.  The film was shot in South Africa in 2021, and Sony Pictures released it in theatres in September 2022. Now, it has arrived on Netflix.

The film is inspired by true events and encapsulates the West African kingdom of Dahomey in 1823. General Nanisca (Viola Davis) is the leader of the all-female group of warriors, the Agojie, that liberated Dahomean women who had been abducted by slavers from the Oyo Empire

Nanisca ‘s role was to train a generation of warriors to join the Agojie to protect the kingdom. Among these warriors is Nawi (Thuso Mbedu), a strong-willed girl who was offered by her father to the king after refusing to marry men who would beat her. Nawi befriends Izogie, a veteran Agojie. She also reveals to Nanisca that she is adopted and shows a birthmark on her left shoulder, shocking Nanisca.

The film received positive reviews from critics for the cast’s performance, including Viola Davis’s starring role and Thuso Mbedu‘s breakout performance.  On Rotten Tomatoes, 94% of 262 critics’ reviews are positive, with an average rating of 7.8/10. The Woman King grossed $67.3-million in the United States and Canada, and $27.1-million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $94.4-million.

The film is directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood and written by Dana Stevens, based on a story she wrote with Maria Bello. The film also stars Thuso Mbedu, Lashana Lynch, Sheila Atim, Hero Fiennes Tiffin, and John Boyega

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