Producer: LokoMotion & Dr. Ulimwengu

Director/Writer: Idris Sutan

DOP: One Echa

Cast: Maggie Vampire – Pipi
Angel Mazanda – Angel
Charles Matukio – Mo

Streaming: YouTube

OVERVIEW

Danga, a series by a Tanzanian director who is also the 2014 Big Brother Winner, Idris Sultan, imagines the genre of city girls of Dar es Salaam as they accomplish their mission through a ‘professional’ con trick.

Pipi, the main actress, follows her much worldlier friends, Angel and Mo, into the orbit of a rich man, Mr. Mak, to rob and steal from him.

This series will make you think again and again about girls and our society today. Idris Sultan crafts a distinctive style to portray the life of the city girls who forge fake romantic relationships to gain financial benefits from rich men.

Nothing will prepare you for the very shocking ending where the rich man becomes bankrupt in a matter of seconds. It really is like a slap in the face or a wake-up call!

Danga is not just a series or a story needed to be told, but also an excellent piece of writing, directing and acting.

IS DANGA WORTH WATCHING?

Yes, because it is an excellently produced series and certainly the Lokomotion’s best work. It is worth watching since it has a graceful and fluid celebration of pure film-making skills.

You may not like the story, but the production and acting is ‘next level’ especially in Tanzania where the Movie Industry (Bongo Movies) is in shambles.

Danga is currently available on YouTube ONLY. You can stream and watch all the episodes.

WHAT MAKES DANGA SPECIAL

  1. Casting

Characters in this series are all new faces with perfect talents. Pipi is much more excellent. She managed to hold the screen well and be totally believable in the role. To anyone who is annoyed by other characters, she did well to win back the trust.

  1. Soundtrack

The use of Swahili’s old school music has matched the most parts of the series’ story-line and made it more beautiful, meaningful, and relevant.

  1. Production

This is the backbone of the series. The lighting, framing, motions, shots, style, and everything are just perfect. Everyone who has watched the series has commended the quality of the production.

CRITICS

This is not an easy series to think about and does have two scenes that some people will find upsetting. However, there is much more to the series than what meets the eye at first, and you will probably want to watch it again.

The boring scenes of the series are as outlined below:

  1. The fraud was unrealistic and not well researched

There is no way in Tanzania someone can transfer more than TZS 500 Million in the blink of an eye. It always takes at least 72 hours to make such a huge transaction, but Pipi and her crew only did so within less than 5 minutes when they were transferring the money from Mr. Mak’s accounts, through internet banking.

Also, in many cases, or least to say in the nature of the plot, the stolen money is from company bank accounts. It would in the procedure, require two to three steps authorization and confirmation for the money to be transferred or moved. It is unlikely that one person within the company would move hundreds of millions of money from the company’s bank account and bypassing other signatories and due diligence from the Bank’s side.

  1. The blackmail

Mr. Mak’s business Partner and consultant, Baruan, made the fraud possible in a very childish trap. He, as a married man, was set up by being captured on a camera ‘hugging’ a young lady – a paid accomplice – who was deliberately sent to him and make it look like they had an affair.

The circumstances were favorable enough for him to defend himself from his wife (as he was threatened that the pictures will be shared with her) but chose to cooperate with the gang. In short, the plot was not convincing at all!

However, these are just minor complaints as the story itself is sufficient to reveal the meaning of every action, plan, and executions. Let us hope the future is exciting from the Lokomotive’s next projects.

3. The series name Choice

Let’s be honest, Danga is an exciting film name for the viewer. It sparks imagination and curiosity even before someone has started watching the series. However, while reviewing this spectacular piece of work from Tanzania, we had some second thoughts. Danga, in its context and ‘street’ meaning, is a register that is used to describe a woman who runs her life by relying on receiving ‘donations’ and financial support from men, and in many cases, more than one man.

Does the series name truly reflect the plot, that is a deliberated, carefully executed, premeditated scamming/conning of a man? If so, what would describe Mo’s involvement in the entire scam project? Would he also be ‘dangaring’ Mak? It is the question that left us with no clear answer. You probably would want to give us feedback on the same on what you think about it.

DANGA REVEALS SECRETS

Like a good short story should be, Danga shows us enough of a window into a life that we come away knowing about the City Girls with their fraudulent missions. While it feels aimless for most of your first viewing, a good performance by Pipi is more than enough to hold the attention.

RATINGS

Considering Tanzania’s film industry shortcomings, Danga is a million stars short series but with a 4.5-star rating out of 5 due to some disappointments we have mentioned above. It deserves to win awards. The direction and camera-work are superb. The acting and creativity are extraordinarily good.

Quite easily one of the best series you can ever watch from Tanzania.

What do you think? You can leave your feedback on the comment box below.

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