It's hard not to be mesmerized by the opening sequence of M.anifest's latest short film, directed by Makere Thekiso. Not only have the artist and director highlighted the beauty and simplicity of the African continent, but also the simple beauty in everyday things that we may take for granted; like the unabashed happiness of a Ghanaian ballet dancer as she flits across the shore of a busy fishing village.
We are brought into a stunning African seashore scene ... the sound of seagulls emanating around as we slowly focus on the beautiful languid movements of a young woman; lost in dance. Suddenly an emotive piano piece grips us as we follow her every move - we are entranced as she takes us on her journey of simple love. As she moves through the crowd, we find her interacting with various characters - yet almost unknowingly so. We can imagine her dance as a representation of her movement through life; young, beautiful and ready to gracefully step in any direction her life may take her - stopping only to admire the view of her life’s goals and successes. Her life is simple but happy. At some point, she stops dead in her tracks as she falls desperately in love with a young man - nothing special but this moment in time between both of them. We find her stopping for a while to admire the view of this deep simple love she has found herself in ... only to be thrown into a new part of life - anguish at the loss of this simple love and her having to find her feet again to dance once more.
M.anifst (born Kwame Ametepee Tsikata) is an internationally acclaimed award-winning musician from Accra, Ghana. He is well-known for his emotive music and stylised videos but he has truly outdone himself in this heart-wrenching artistic piece. His words echo through the short film as this young woman finds her feet once more and we are reminded of our own lives and the "simple love" we all crave.
M.anifest's words transport you into a world of memories as you think of all the times you too were searching for that simple love - that love that would make you feel whole... that love that, despite feeling like nothing at all, meant everything to you.
"I want a simple love... money cannot buy...
I want a wife not a concubine ... I've got your back will you hold my spine…”
There is something for everyone in this short film; from those who are reminiscing over past lost love and those wishing for a life filled with this irresistible simple love and M.anifest has chosen the perfect medium in order to have us experience this.
The short film has become a channel for serious musical artists to showcase true depth and emotion visually. Through using music as the backdrop, beautiful images and storytelling techniques are utilised to explain what the artist was visualising when writing their musical tracks and allowing us to experience the true depth of the work put into their music. "Simple Love" does this in such a beautiful and simple way yet this would not have worked in your usual music video piece as this would have simply exploited the song for the sake of the song without considering the true depth and meaning of the words being expressed by the musical genius that is M.anifest.