Scenes, a series from Nowness, sees filmmakers capture wild and wonderful cultural experiences around the world.
In “Jab Jab” Black Dog Films directors Reuben Millns and Tom Harrad, explore Grenada’s annual J’ouvert festival. Every year, thousands of Grenadians congregate in the middle of the night to ‘play Jab,’ covered head-to-toe in motor oil as a symbol of remembrance and defiance.
The directors worked with carnival organisers and locals to gain an understanding into the importance of Jab Jab, and its cultural and historical significance.
“Jab Jab is not a style, or a youth movement. It is a unique tradition. Jab Jab represents the balance between mass action and mass joy: a recognition of hardships endured by slaves during the island’s colonial past and a celebration of the freedoms of today. Jab Jab is not a style, or a youth movement. It is a unique tradition, an expression of freedom, and an important aspect of national identity for Grenadian people.
“The word ‘Jab’ originates from the French word ‘diable,’ meaning devil. However, the masquerade is not a celebration of the devil, but rather a castigation of all evil things. As filmmakers, we were fascinated by this cultural movement because it combines both party and protest.” Reuben Millns.