13 Months of Sunshine


The new movie titled "13 Months of Sunshine", is a wonderful film which explores the universal ideals of success and love, and the lengths to which people will go to achieve one, or the other, or both. I am particularly drawn to this film because of my own personal experience of marrying my Moroccan husband for reasons other than love; but which, over time, subsequently changed.

This movie is particularly engaging, because it is written from the perspective of immigrants who have come to this country to achieve the "American" dream. Whether they have lived here for a while, as in the case of the male lead character; or they have recently arrived, as is the case with the female lead, their struggles are representative of all immigrants who have come to this country in search of a better life.

People come from all over the world to "make money" in America, but what they loose in the process, and what most Americans have already lost in the process, is nicely demonstrated through the interactions of the main characters.

The director subtly explores the tension between the ideals of American success versus its reality, and the cost associated with pursuing this premise.  A premise which often demands the sacrifice of interpersonal relationships, cultural values, and soul nourishing pursuits upon the altar of the "almighty dollar".


"13 Months of Sunshine" is particularly accessible because it is written in English with some Amharic dialogue. Non-Amharic speaking audiences will be able to achieve rare insight into Ethiopian culture, while enjoying a well-written story that will speak to all immigrants. It is a subtle commentary on the West and in particular, America.

Kudos to this up and coming Ethiopian filmmaker!