In 2005, Yesterday, a South African film about the AIDS plague, earned an Academy Award nomination for best foreign language film. Maybe that’s the reason why, six years later, Life, Above All didn’t make the final five. The story opens with 12-year-old Chanda ordering a coffin for her baby sister. Chanda does not understand that the baby died of AIDS, that her mother has AIDS, as does her siblings’ absent father. The subject is just taboo. She also refuses to believe that her best friend is a child prostitute for truck drivers. Step by step, Chanda awakens to the harsh reality around her. Khomotso Manyaka does a fine job as Chanda. In the United States, AIDS is openly discussed but rare, so it requires a cultural leap to appreciate that in South Africa it is a more widespread tragedy and people are ashamed to admit that a loved one died of the disease.