Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Availability of African movies in the US

Please note that this post has been updated in November 2010 to capture current realities in the market.

There are three main sites that sell original English movies in the US. They are:

1. African movies Mall
This used to be Nollywoodtitles, and I bought from them very frequently, and had only good things to say about them. They usually delivered promptly and efficiently. And when there was some kind of hitch, they usually apologized and tried to make amends.  However, as they were trying to transition to a new name and I guess a new website, they stopped filling orders, stopped communicating with customers, it was strange. I was able to get a refund so I was not too unhappy. However, I have no idea how they will behave under a new name and I have no idea if they have new management. I have not bought anything from them since the makeover.

2. Francofilms
I have also ordered from them, though not as frequently. I have found them to be really slow on fulfilling internet orders, so I am not as excited to order from them. I get my movies after about two weeks, and I have had to contact them by phone (once) before I got my movies. In addition, on one occasion, they did not have one of the movies I wanted, and instead of contacting me to either refund my money or find out what replacement I wanted, they put in a movie I did not order – which turned out to be crappy! I complained, but they never got back to me!!
Update: May 2010
I decided to give Franco films another chance, and they did the exact same thing to me - sent me a movie I did not order with no apology. I complained again and they totally ignored me. I should have disputed the payment on paypal, but it was a busy time in my life so I had to let it go. I am now boycotting Franco films henceforth. You buy from them at your own peril They have no respect for customer service - that is my conclusion now!!

3. Executive Image movies

I have ordered from them as well. When it appeared that they did not have the movie I had ordered in stock, they were good enough to call me about what replacement I wanted. When I asked for a refund, they agreed, but were later able to send me the movie I had earlier ordered. Therefore, I currently have no complaints about them, although I have not ordered from them frequently enough to comment knowledgeably about their quality of service.

Note: I used to have a site here where you could buy Yoruba movies, but they have since shut down. I will let you know if I get a replacement. 


In addition to these three, you can also sometimes get original African movies from:
5. Your local African store.
Many of them stock pirated and genuine African movies. If you demand for the genuine movies, then perhaps you can decrease their desire to stock pirated movies.

Important things to know about the aforementioned online sites:

a) I only order from them via paypal, so that I can get a refund if any trade disputes arise.

b)These sites put up the movies they have in stock on a rolling basis, so even if they do not have a movie up you want on their website, they may have it later, so you can contact them and find out if they can get what you want for you.

c) I have been told by a reputable and reliable source, that even these legitimate sites also pirate movies that they have not bought the rights to. Please buy only original movies from them to remove their motive for doing so.


With regards to piracy, here are a few important facts:

Apart from these three sites that I have put up there, every other site, at least in the US, is engaged in piracy. This means that they are selling movies without the knowledge or the permission of the original producers. Don’t be deceived by whatever they put up on their sites, claiming to pay producers or what not. They don’t pay producers a single dime. So if you buy from them, be aware that you are paying somebody for the ability to buy a copy of a movie and reproduce it a hundred times. Here are a few tips for telling a pirated movie:
  • Check the packaging and make sure the movie is air-tight sealed.
  • Look for the movie title and movie company on the top-end seal.
  • If you're able to, check the bottom of the disc itself and make sure it's color is clear-white, and that you're able to see yourself in it's reflection (as if it's a mirror).
  • Non-manufactured discs tend to have a purplish or bluish hue (purple = DVDs, blue = CDs).
  • Look for the words "copyright," "illegal," "infringement," "unauthorized reproduction," "FBI," "anti-piracy," "federal prison," "5 years in federal prison," "$250,000 fine" or "$150,000 fine" on the bottom-back cover of the movie.
  • Look for a Production/Release date on the bottom-back cover of the movie like "2009...All Rights Reserved."
Source:


If you are aware of any other websites that sell genuine copies of african movies in the US, even if the movies are from East or South Africa, please let me know and I will update this list. Also, if you are based in Europe or Canada and you know any sellers of genuine African movies, please let me know so that I can do a list for those regions as well.

Thanks,
Moviemadam.

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About Me

This website is devoted to fans of African movies who want to know which ones are worth watching. We only review above average movies on this site. The purpose is to give props to the actors, producers and directors who have squeezed water out of rocks and created decent entertainment against all odds. If you want to review a movie for us, please email moviemadam@gmail.com. We would be happy to feature all good african film, regardless of age, or origin. Thanks for stopping by

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