A Pair of Boots and a Bicycle is a South African dramatised documentary created by Vincent Moloi about black South African veterans of World War II who personally tell the stories of their lives and experiences in the war.
It premiered at the Edinburgh African Film Festival in 2007. The documentary is 80 minutes long and was produced by Edwin Wes for Rare Earth Films.
A Pair of Boots and a Bicycle aired in South Africa on SABC2 on Sunday 24 February 2008, at 21h00.
Why would men who are repressed at home valiantly fight in the war of their oppressors? And what did the triumphant victors give them, upon their return, for their "gallant and distinguished service"?
In this very personal, fascinating investigation, South African documentary maker Vincent Moloi journeys from the Soweto sitting rooms of veterans to El Alamein to find the answers, and in doing so unearths the significant contribution of South Africa's black soldiers to the Allies' North Africa campaign.
Told with poignancy, the irony of their situation is slowly revealed through the life and actions of one soldier: Job Maseko. Job received the Military Medal for a heroic and ingenious sabotage of a German supply ship while a prisoner of war in Tobruk.
The documentary honours those who participated in a war never intended to honour them.
Mapping a time line that spans the period from before the war into modern day democratic South Africa, the documentary points to the simplistic efforts of these soldiers which reverberate and live on in the construction of democracy.