DCA Archive

Discovery Opening Gala: Abulele


Celebrate the opening of this year’s festival by dressing up as your favourite monster and joining us for our gala screening of Abulele, a joyful story of one boy and his monster friend. After the film you can get creative making your own monster, explore our exhibition by Kelly Richardson and enjoy a refreshment or two. And if you’re keen to get even more involved make sure you book your place to create a monster animation before the film.

Ancient legends warn children about the Abulele: enormous, furry and sometimes dangerous creatures who are able to hide among the human race by making themselves invisible to everyone except those they choose to be seen by. Adam, a young boy grieving the loss of his brother, discovers an Abulele living in his building and bit by bit they gradually become friends. Along the way, and amongst the madness that the Abulele often causes, they discover they can help each other out in the most unexpected ways. Adam begins to realise that it is not the Abulele but the humans who are the real monsters, especially when gun-toting Special Forces appear on the trail of his new friend. Will Adam risk everything to save his big friendly giant?

In the best traditions of films like E.T. and Belle & Sebastian, this is a classic tale of innocence, friendship and facing up to the threats posed by the adult world. When school has become a tightrope to be walked between domineering teachers and playground bullies, and family is fractured by grief, it is the purity of unexpected friendship that offers comfort and joy. This film delivers entertainment in spades, and, somewhat unsurprisingly, is currently in negotiation for a Hollywood remake. So take this chance to see the original, with its fantastic young cast, terrific moments of humour, excellent use of sound and an extremely large, hairy, green-eyed, pop-guzzling monster we would all very much like as a friend.