from the Cape of Good Hope
Lebogang Rasethaba, Nthato Mokgata | South Africa | 2021 | 66′ | OV (englsih subtitles)
MUTANT is an intimate portrait of Isaac Mutant, one of South Africa’s most radical and controversial hip-hop artists, and the turbulent world in which he lives – a world of extremes, in one of the most dangerous corners of the world, the notorious, gang-infested Cape Flats of Cape Town. The film captures their harsh reality, not without also seeing the humanity in everyday life there, the beauty in the colorful community that loves, lives and laughs despite the misery.
The film traces Isaac’s career. Through his art and his language, from his point of view, he explores the larger context, the social conditions in contemporary South Africa, because they are what create Isaac’s dark music in the first place, and at the same time are represented and questioned in it.
Isaac emerges as a champion and spokesperson for the marginalized Cape Coloured Community (the largest yet marginalized population group in the Cape, of highly diverse cultural and ethnic composition). Their plight is the ink for his lyrics; accordingly, he confidently proclaims, “I am their voice!”
Isaac is a sensitive, intuitive and complex character, dealing with issues of racism, class and identity as well as questions of love and family. Unfettered and unsparing, he allows the film access to his dreams, hopes and frustrations, his victories and his disappointments.