Ghana Movie Posters: Spectacle on Sackcloth

Ghana Movie Posters: Spectacle on Sackcloth

First published: Fall 2007

Demonic serpents; a half-child, half-beast; blood-soaked heads and arms, removed by machetes - just a few of the disturbing images of voodoo terror and sci-fi horror that burst from the canvas of movie posters from Ghana. These potent paintings are the output of a brief period of around twenty years, beginning in the mid-1980s.

 


Cinema-going was long a popular activity in Ghana. The large towns, particularly the capital, Accra, inherited magnificent cinemas from the British colonisers, but over the years, faced with the difficulty of finding spare parts for their large 35mm projectors, these establishments closed down one by one.

As video became more widespread, the void was filled by a group of entrepreneurs who created small, mobile film-distribution empires. Armed with videocassettes, television monitors and portable gas-powered generators, they brought movies to towns and rural villages. At the same time, video clubs sprang up, offering Hollywood B-movies, Asian action films and Nigerian horror movies. Rooms equipped with televisions and video recorders became picture houses with wooden benches where films could be viewed for a modest sum. 

 

This is an article extract; read the full article in Raw Vision #60