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HBO to Premiere Documentaries on Contemporary Cuba

A pair of documentaries on contemporary Cuba will premiere on HBO just three days after the death of Fidel Castro.

By now, you probably know that Cuba’s longtime revolutionary and former president, Fidel Castro, died Friday at the age of 90. As the world begins to contemplate the life and legacy of this extremely divisive, extremely complex individual, it seems HBO was one step ahead of everyone else. The American television network, rather coincidentally, has a full night of Cuban programming planned for this Monday with the premiere of two original documentaries centered around contemporary Cuba.


The first of the two films is Patria O Muerte: Cuba, Fatherland or Death, which looks at the current state of Cuba through the eyes of its artists, activists, bloggers, writers, musicians and everyday people. The 57-minute documentary marks a directorial debut for Spanish actress-turned-director Olatz López Garmendia.

“Forgoing the usual emphases on salsa clubs, dominoes, headstrong women and broken-down American jalopies, the film takes a sharply critical look at day-to-day life in Cuba today,” Remezcla’s Steve Macfarlane said of the film, adding that Garmendia “defies precedent for critiquing the island nation’s lack of public freedoms without denouncing the Castros (or, indeed, communism) outright as the devil incarnate.”

The second of the two documentaries is Jon Alpert's Mariela Castro’s March: Cuba’s LGBT Revolution, which looks at Cuba’s LGBT community through the work of Mariela Castro, daughter of President Raúl Castro (and niece of Fidel Castro), as she champions LGBT equality and social reforms in present-day Cuba.

The documentaries premiere on HBO this Monday, November 28th, beginning at 8pm EST with Patria O Muerte: Cuba, Fatherland or Death, followed at 9pm EST with Mariela Castro’s March: Cuba’s LGBT Revolution. Both films will be available to watch on HBO NOW, HBO GO, HBO On Demand and affiliate portals.

H/T Shadow & Act

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Photo by Giles Clarke/UNOCHA via Getty Images

Cameroon Holds Vigil to Remember Children Killed in School Attack

Residents in Kumba paid their respects to the seven lives lost, and those injured during the attack over the weekend.

In the latest tragedy to come from Cameroon's historically violent clash between Anglo and Francophone citizens, seven children were murdered after attackers stormed a school with guns and machetes over the weekend.

In what has been deemed as the "darkest and saddest day," by Bishop Agapitus Nfon of Kumba, armed attackers stormed the Mother Francisca International Bilingual Academy, targeting students aged 9 to 12. The tragic event saw dozens of children injured, some critically.

The attack has shocked the nation, with both local and international agencies condemning the horrible offense. On Monday, Cameroonian President Paul Biya denounced the "horrific murder" of the school children, and alluded to the "appropriate measures" being taken in order to bring justice to the families of the victims. Prime Minister Dion Ngute Joseph shared his condolences via a tweet saying, "I bow before the memory of these innocent kids."

The Cameroonian presidency and governing body have blamed Anglophone 'separatists' for the attack, though the group claims no part in the attack.

Human rights groups, however, have blamed both opposing parties, as the conflict has led to the death of over 3,000 deaths and resulted in more than 700,000 Cameroonians fleeing their homes and the country.

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Interview: Meet Velemseni, Eswatini’s Queen of Soul

Soul artist Velemseni's music reflects Eswatini culture and aesthetics. "The Kingdom of Eswatini is a magical and mysterious place, and my music aims to interpret and document that mystique, drawing from genres like Swazi gospel, soul, African soul, cinematic and traditional music," says the artist.