There isn’t a lot of indie sci fi coming out of Africa these days. That’s one thing that makes PUMZI stand out. PUMZI is the visionary post-apocalyptic dystopian short sci fi film from acclaimed Kenyan writer and director Wanuri Kahiu.
The post-apocalyptic sci-fi indie short is set 35 years after World War III has destroyed the world’s ecology. Humanity has retreated underground, living in completely self-contained compounds.
One such compound is the Maitu Community in East Africa, where a young botanist named Asha (portrayed by the luminous Kudzani Moswela) receives a mysterious delivery that signifies new hope for the world — moisture-rich, uncontaminated soil.
The determined Asha defies her totalitarian government’s edict to destroy the soil sample and remain underground. Escaping to the surface, she embarks on a perilous quest to seek out the source of the precious life-giving earth.
PUMZI, which is the Swahili word for “breath,” is a shining example of the genre known as Afrofuturism — speculative fiction told through the culture, experiences, art, mythology, and traditions of Africa, as well as the African diaspora.
The result of Kahiu’s vision is a compelling film that breathes fresh air into the well-trod genre trope of a dystopian society by reflecting it through a different cultural lens.
Watch PUMZI now on Recursor.TV and share your thoughts in the comments.
Guest reviewer Rod T. Faulkner is the founder of The7thMatrix.com, a website dedicated to promoting the best genre web series and short films. He also is the author of 200 Best Online Sci-Fi Short Films, a compilation of exceptional SF&F short films.