Director: Mira Nair
A Thrilling Disney Movie Of Hope & Courage:
This movie is the story of 9-year-old Phiona Mutesi who begins her life in one of the biggest of the eight slums, Katwe, in Kampala, Uganda. Her life is waking up at five o’clock each morning to begin a 3-hour trek to fill a jerrycan with drinkable water and the rest of the day is spent in taking care of her brothers and selling maize with her mother.
Her mother, Nakku Harriet, played brilliantly by Academy Award winner, Lupita Nyong’o is a strong woman. The story also shows a widow’s struggle to show a mother’s fierce love for her children to provide the best and at the same time to keep a life of integrity in the face of much need. One day, Phiona follows her brother, Brian, who disappears every day at a particular time.
Her world changes one day when she meets Robert Katende (David Oyelowo), a missionary from Sports Outreach, who teaches children how to play chess in a makeshift hut. Katende’s mission is to transform the lives of these children one move at a time through chess, by teaching them that strategic thinking and planning can be used in everyday life.
When Phiona sees chess, she is transfixed and displays an instant affinity for the game. The coach is amazed at her game and encourages and challenges her by saying: “Sometimes the place you are used to is not the place you belong, you belong where you believe you belong. Where is that for you?” Phiona’s success in local tournaments opens the door for her future success.
You will laugh and cry with Phiona as she journeys from the slums to international chess tournaments. The Chess Academy and Mentoring Center began in the slums of Kampala, Uganda, when SOM soccer coach, Robert Katende, noticed children watching from the sidelines of soccer matches he had organized. Robert started with only five children and now has over 300 who gather daily across five separate slum locations.
Teachers and educators, if you’re looking for a unique and memorable way to bring your lesson plan to life, schedule a screening of this film. A must see for all parents and children! A true story of a Ugandan girl living in hopeless circumstances seemingly worsening but rises above it all to reach the pinnacle of success with the help of her coach and mother!
A movie especially for teenagers — she is a teen! Go! See this Movie! You will not be disappointed, and will have your heart lifted up by the great message of hope and perseverance it brings.