One Take Grace

Eclectic cinematic portrait of full-time domestic worker and part-time actor, Mothiba Grace Bapela, as she reflects on her extraordinary life, and searches for a way to break damaging cycles.

SA Premiere



Lindiwe Matshikiza


South Africa



Running Time:

91 min


English | Sepedi | Zulu

This engagingly idiosyncratic film introduces us to 58-year-old Mothiba Grace Bapela, a Black South African woman who has long worked as a domestic worker and decides in her 40s that she would like to become an actress. Shot over the course of 10 years by multidisciplinary artist Lindiwe Matshikiza and her collaborators, using a range of cameras, including body cams on Bapela, the result is strangely engaging, the experimental edge of the film softened by the charisma of its subject. The result is an immersive adventure in surrealism, although strongly linked to the lived reality of the many South Africans who work in other people’s houses at the expense of their own family life. Making use of repetitive soundscapes, animation and re-enactments, One Take Grace’s unique perspective makes for compelling viewing. The film was nominated for the IDFA Award for Best First Feature.

Rating: 13 SV