ARTMATTAN FILMS LATEST RELEASES

"Angels on Diamond Streetby the Netherlands-based director Petr Lom, is rich with quotable quotes. It is a tender look at an American church with an old, persevering, social justice soul, and the people who make their soup kitchen a communal magnet." ~ JoAnne Velin, moderntimes.review.com
In his masterfully directed picture Stefan Arsenijević delivers a crystal clear, humanistic account of the need to find one’s place in the world; this is also a tale of love, the most profound testimony of which might also be the most painful.” ~ Lenka Tyrpáková, Karlovy Vary FF

New Releases - Institutional DVD / DSL

A SON (UN FILS)
A SON (UN FILS)
A SON (UN FILS)
A SON (UN FILS)

A SON (UN FILS)

Regular price $395.00
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A Son - Trailer - ArtMattan Films.mp4 from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

A SON / Bik Eneich: Un fils 

DIRECTED BY MEHDI BARSAOUI 
TUNISIA/ 2019/ DRAMA/ ARABIC WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES/ 96 MIN

SYNOPSIS

An intense family drama starring French-Tunisian actor Sami Bouajila, winner of the Orizzonti Award for Best Actor, Venice Film Festival 2019.  11 year old Aziz needs a liver transplant after being seriously injured during a terrorist ambush while on holiday in 2011. At the hospital, a family secret will be revealed.

A drama that expertly captures complex human emotions within their socio-cultural, historical and political context. ~ Hollywood Reporter

Not many debuting directors are able to bring subtlety and depth to a heart-rending subject, which is just one reason why Mehdi M. Barsaoui's superb "A Son" deserves significant attention. ~ Variety

It's a film reminiscent of the work of Iranian master Asghar Farhadi [A Separation, The Salesman], full of twists and turns as it puts its characters in increasingly tragic situations. ~ Cineuropa

 

AWARDS

César Awards, France (2021)
Best Actor: Sami Bouajila

Victoria Film Festival, Canada (2020) 
Best Feature: Mehdi Barsaoui

Malmö Arab Film Festival (2020)
Best Actress: Najla Ben Abdallah

Kosmorama, Trondheim Internasjonale Film Festival (2020)
New Director's Award: Mehdi Barsaoui

Venice Film Festival (2019)
Best Actor: Sami Bouajila

Cairo International Film Festival (2019)
Arab Cinema's Horizons Award: Mehdi Barsaoui
Salah Abu Seif Prize: Mehdi Barsaoui
UNFPA Award: Mehdi Barsaoui

Hainan International Film Festival (2019)
Young Talent Award Winner: Best Feature Film 

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A TASTE OF OUR LAND
A TASTE OF OUR LAND
A TASTE OF OUR LAND
A TASTE OF OUR LAND
A TASTE OF OUR LAND
A TASTE OF OUR LAND

A TASTE OF OUR LAND

Regular price $395.00
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A Taste of Our Land - Trailer - Art from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

Productions on Vimeo.

A TASTE OF OUR LAND

Set in an unnamed African country, A Taste of Our Land is a film about greed told against the backdrop of the current Chinese influence in African countries. While trying to provide for his pregnant wife, Yohani, an older African man, retrieves a gold nugget in a Chinese-run mine built on his land and runs away to sell it for $100. When he learns its real value, he becomes as obsessed with it as Cheng, the Chinese mine supervisor who will stop at nothing to get it back.

Winner, Best First Feature Film, 2020 Africa Movie Academy Awards; Winner, Best First Feature Narrative, 2020 Pan African Film Festival.

Directed by Yuhi Amuli, Rwanda, 2020, 84min, drama, English.

 

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AFRICAN IMMIGRANTS IN EUROPE:  OTOMO & WAALO FENDO

AFRICAN IMMIGRANTS IN EUROPE: OTOMO & WAALO FENDO

Regular price $395.00
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OTOMO

A powerful film portraying institutionalized racism and police brutality, Otomo provides a convincing look at the everyday world of refugees, who are continuously surrounded by tension and insecurity.

In the summer of 1989, a Stuttgart newspaper reported the true story of a West African asylum seeker who physically assaulted an intolerant subway ticket-taker; fled, and became the target of a city-wide manhunt. Otomo is a sober, fictionalized reconstruction of a tale that shocked Stuttgart, and a gripping portrait of how institutionalized racism drives a disempowered individual to violence and inhumanity.

West African immigrant Frederic Otomo (Isaach de Bankole) lacks the proper papers to be hired for the most menial of jobs; he has survived for eight years with the help of a Catholic charity. Otomo is the target of verbal abuse, is thrown out of his boarding house, and even scorned by neighborhood dogs. He feels and looks out of place. A stoic bubbling pot of wrath on the run, de Bankole's performance establishes Otomo's essence without words-language cannot express the gravity of his situation. As a ticking soundtrack counts down his fated minutes, Otomo is helped by a kind, aging hippie and her granddaughter, establishing the potential for an inclusive German society….if it is not too late...

|Germany|1999|84 mins|drama|German with English subtitles|Frieder Schlaich, dir.|

"I was impressed by the decision to make Otomo a bit of an anti-hero, seeming aware that in desperate times, good people may say or do things outside the norm." -- Greg Dean Schmitz, Greg's previews at Yahoo!Movies

"Documents the institutionalized racism and xenophobia that painted one man into a corner, while never excusing the terrible means by which he took his final escape." -- Jessica Winter, Village Voice

"Much of the sense of size in this account of an immigrant worker, who is only one among many thousands in Germany, comes from the performance by Isaach de Bankole." -- Stanley Kauffmann, New Republic

 


WAALO FENDO: WHERE THE EARTH FREEZES

Senegal / Switzerland, 1998, 65 mins, drama in Wolof and Italian with English subtitles, Mohammed Soudani, dir.

Milan, like Paris or Stuttgart, and like many other European cities, is the theater of the drama of immigration. Demba reconstructs his story and that of his brother Yaro, both Senegalese immigrants in Italy, in a long and fragmentary flashback that begins with Yaro’s murder and recounts their departure from the village, arrival in Europe, the work they find selling lighters and picking tomatoes in the south of Italy: the stages every “non-EEC citizen” goes through in Italy. It is a story of immigration like so many others but that most people are unaware of. Waalo Fendo illustrates the dehumanization faced by so many immigrants all over the world.

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ANGELICA
ANGELICA
ANGELICA
ANGELICA
ANGELICA
ANGELICA
ANGELICA
ANGELICA

ANGELICA

Regular price $395.00
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ANGELICA

Angelica, after a long absence from Puerto Rico, returns home when her father, Wilfredo, suffers a stroke. This unexpected return and her father's illness force Angelica to re-evaluate her relationship with her mother and family members who don't accept her because of her skin color. She must face herself and discovers that she does not know who she is. After her father's death, Angelica must decide whether to return to the comfort of her previous life, dissatisfied, but secure, or set on an adventurous path to rediscover herself as an independent, modern, strong, black, and Puerto Rican woman.


Directed by Marisol Gómez-Mouakad, Puerto Rico, 2016, 100min, Drama, English & Spanish w/English subtitles

"Purposely challenging the Eurocentric beauty standards that blatantly plague Latin America on and off screen, Puerto Rican director Marisol Gómez-Mouakad sets out to tell the story of an empowered Afro-Latina fighting colorism at home in her debut feature Angélica." ~ Remezcla

People talk about racism and sexism in the U.S.,” Gómez-Mouakad explains. “They may not do much, but in talking about it they are at least addressing the problem. In Puerto Rico — and across the Caribbean and Latin America — there is a lot of denial. If you do talk about the issues, you are accused of being over sensitive. But words have power and words can hurt.” ~ director Marisol Gómez-Mouakad

"In addition to the theme of racism, the film touches upon the implications of machismo in a patriarchal society from the perspective of women." ~ Repeating Islands 

"Another glorious, glorious portrait on race and the roles women play—by pressure, by tradition, by choice. " ~ Guilie Castillo Oriard

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ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET
ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET
ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET
ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET
ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET
ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET
ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET
ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET
ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET
ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET

ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET

Regular price $395.00
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Angels On Diamond Street Trailer - Art HD from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

ANGELS ON DIAMOND STREET

DIRECTED BY Petr Lom
U.S.A. / Netherlands / 2019 / ENGLISH / SPANISH w/English Subtitles / 88 MIN


SYNOPSIS

Angels on Diamond Street spotlights three women fighting for social justice in an African-American church in Philadelphia. We follow head cook Mamie Mather, former Black Panther Barbara Easley-Cox and Pastor Renee Mackenzie at the soup kitchen of the Church of the Advocate: a national monument with a rich history in the civil rights movement.

When an undocumented Mexican immigrant family - Carmela Apolonio Hernandez and her children - asks the church for sanctuary, they are welcome with open arms. Pastor Mackenzie courageously defies the ICE immigration authorities in an act of civil disobedience.

A documentary about compassion that invites us to forget about all borders, be they of race, nationality or religion.

 

"Angels on Diamond Street, by the Netherlands-based director Petr Lom, is rich with quotable quotes. It is a tender look at an American church with an old, persevering, social justice soul, and the people who make their soup kitchen a communal magnet.

The film was recorded during a two-year focus on North Philadelphia's activist congregation of the Church of the Advocate in the heart of a poor, African American neighborhood. The church building is a huge, stone beauty finished in 1887, named the George W. South Memorial Church, but is best known by its current moniker. Informative and strung together chronologically, it grows into an occasional conversation between the man behind the camera and the people he follows. You can read a lot in its details." ~ JoAnne Velin, moderntimes.review.com

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AS FAR AS I CAN WALK
AS FAR AS I CAN WALK
AS FAR AS I CAN WALK
AS FAR AS I CAN WALK
AS FAR AS I CAN WALK
AS FAR AS I CAN WALK

AS FAR AS I CAN WALK

Regular price $445.00
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As Far as I Can Walk Trailer - Art from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

As Far as I Can Walk is a 2021 internationally co-produced drama directed by Serbian Oscar-nominated director (for his 2003 short film '(A)Torsion') Stefan Arsenijevic that follows a couple who left Ghana with a dream of a better life in Europe and now live as refugees in Belgrade.

22-year-old Siisi, nicknamed Strahinja, is doing everything to integrate in Serbia. He volunteers for the Red Cross in the camp where he lives, looks for work, plays on the local football team... His biggest challenge, however, is to win back the woman he loves. When she disappears one day, Strahinja sets out to find her.

As Far as I Can Walk is a re-imagining of a traditional medieval epic in which contemporary African migrants take the place of Serbian national heroes. Urgent and timeless at the same time, the adaptation raises questions about identity, tradition, race and love.

It premiered at the 55th Karlovy Vary International Film Festival in 2021 where it won five prizes including the main Grand Prix – Crystal Globe and the Best Actor honor awarded to Ibrahim Koma for his starring performance in the film.

By Strahinja Banović / Serbia / France / Luxembourg / Bulgaria / Lithuania / 2021 / 92 min / English and Serbian with English Sub.

 

It’s a surprising and exhilarating blend of contemporary refugee story, love triangle and medieval Serbian poem.” ~ Alisa Simon, Variety

In his masterfully directed picture Stefan Arsenijević delivers a crystal clear, humanistic account of the need to find one’s place in the world; this is also a tale of love, the most profound testimony of which might also be the most painful.” ~ Lenka Tyrpáková, Karlovy Vary FF

“Arsenijević's film is vividly crafted and performed. The predominantly English-language film should gather interest [ ] on the strength of its topicality and emotional accessibility.” ~ Guy Lodge, Variety

The refugees are presented as broken and poor, but dignified, and as opposed to many other similarly themed films, we get real, flesh-and-blood characters in Strahinja and Ababuo, with well-defined personalities, pasts and hopes for the future. And therein lies the film's greatest strength: both actors are positively magnetic on the screen, but especially Koma, whose drive and extraordinary charisma often collide with Mensah-Offei's pride and headstrong ambition.” ~ Vladan Petkovic, Cineuropa

One of Arsenijevic’s avowed goals with As Far as I Can Walk was to portray refugees as distinct individuals with inner lives, dreams and aspirations, not just blank statistics. In this he is admirably successful.” ~ Stephen Dalton, Verdict

 

ABOUT THE MAKING OF THE FILM

“Arsenijević’s hometown Belgrade marks an important point on the Balkan migrant route. A few years ago, he could see thousands of new refugees arriving every day. He says, “Having my own experience of war and poverty in the 90s, I could easily identify. I started talking with migrants, hearing their experiences. There was this moving story of epic proportions happening right in front of me. It was just important to find the right angle to tell it.” As the migrant crisis grew, many locals promulgated paranoid fears that migrants would take over European culture by imposing their own. “National identity and national heritage are touchy subjects in my country,” says Arsenijević. “So, it occurred to me: what if I replace Serbian national heroes with contemporary African migrants? I thought this could provide some interesting perspectives.”  ~ Alisa Simon, Variety

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BACK OF THE MOON: SOPHIATOWN 1958
BACK OF THE MOON: SOPHIATOWN 1958
BACK OF THE MOON: SOPHIATOWN 1958
BACK OF THE MOON: SOPHIATOWN 1958
BACK OF THE MOON: SOPHIATOWN 1958
BACK OF THE MOON: SOPHIATOWN 1958

BACK OF THE MOON: SOPHIATOWN 1958

Regular price $395.00
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Back Of the Moon Trailer - Art from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

BACK OF THE MOON: SOPHIATOWN 1958

Oscar-nominated South African director, Angus Gibson, takes us back to the glitz and menace of Sophiatown in his stylish new film, Back Of The Moon. Starring Richard Lukunku and Moneoa Moshesh.

28 July 1958. Badman, an intellectual and the leader of the most powerful gang in Sophiatown, lives life on his own terms in this crazy, cosmopolitan, half demolished ghetto on the edge of Johannesburg. The gorgeous Eve Msomi, a torch-singer on the brink of an international career, is giving her last concert in the local hall before she travels to London. Tomorrow, legions of Apartheid police will force the residents of Gerty street out of their homes and they will be trucked to a desolate township, ten miles out of the city.

Refusing to face the bleak reality of black South African life, Badman has decided that he will fight to the death for his home. But fate, thrusts Eve Msomi, whom he has loved from a distance, into his orbit. And on this night that bears this beautiful encounter, Badman’s gang, The Vipers, sensing his vulnerability, turns on them both.


Directed by Angus Gibson, South Africa, 2019, 95min, Drama, Zulu w/English subtitles

Eve is kind of a character that was based on Miriam Makeba on the eve that she leaves for London. So you have this great talent that you know is being driven out of this country and then Badman, played by Richard Lukunku, is an intellectual, he should have been a leader in the community and in order to hold his head up high, he has become a gangster. So both of these pretty fabulous characters are lost to South Africa. That is something that I find sad.”  ~ Director August Wilson

AWARDS

South African Film and Television Awards (2020)
Best Achievement in Costume Design - Feature Film

Black Film Festival Montreal, Canada (2020) 
Best International Narrative Feature

Durban International Film Festival, South Africa (2019) 
Best South African Narrative Feature

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DANCING THE TWIST IN BAMAKO
DANCING THE TWIST IN BAMAKO
DANCING THE TWIST IN BAMAKO
DANCING THE TWIST IN BAMAKO
DANCING THE TWIST IN BAMAKO
DANCING THE TWIST IN BAMAKO

DANCING THE TWIST IN BAMAKO

Regular price $395.00
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Dancing The Twist in Bamako - Trailer - ArtMattan Films from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

DANCING THE TWIST IN BAMAKO

Mali, 1962. The youth of Bamako dance the twist to rock and roll music newly imported from the West and dream of political renewal. Samba, a young socialist, falls for spirited Lara during one of his missions to the bush. To escape her forced marriage, she secretly flees with him to the city. But Lara’s husband won’t let them be and the Revolution soon brings painful challenges as they dream of a future together.

by Robert Guédiguian, France / Canada / Senegal, 2021, 129min, Romantic Drama, French with English subtitles.

 

"Inspired by the photographs of Malick SidibéDancing the Twist in Bamako (the screenplay of which was written by Robert Guédiguian and Gilles Taurand) does not claim to moralise or substitute for an African perspective. The film relies on the universality of love stories that defy (at the risk of their lives) traditions and ideologies, to weave a story nourished by simplicity, enthusiasm, and even the touching naivety of youth, against the backdrop of a utopia of class struggle confronted by "realpolitik." A dive into the past, punctuated by a multitude of hits from the early 60s whose fragrance of effervescent happiness is tinged with nostalgia and tragedy, like a challenge to time and the dictates of the mind." ~ Fabien Lemercier, Cineuropa

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Fighting for Respect: African-American Soldiers in WWI

Fighting for Respect: African-American Soldiers in WWI

Regular price $395.00
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Fighting For Respect - Art Trailer from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

FIGHTING FOR RESPECT: AFRICAN-AMERICAN SOLDIERS IN WWI

Directed by Joanne Burke
USA/FRANCE / 2021 / 54 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / ENGLISH

SYNOPSIS

Fighting for Respect captures the plight of African American soldiers who fought in WWI, receiving the Croix de Guerre military decoration from France, while still fighting discrimination and hatred at home in America.

DIRECTOR AND CAST

Director: Joanne Burke
 

GENRES

  • Documentary 
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KAFE NEGRO: CUBA & THE HAITIAN REVOLUTION
KAFE NEGRO: CUBA & THE HAITIAN REVOLUTION
KAFE NEGRO: CUBA & THE HAITIAN REVOLUTION
KAFE NEGRO: CUBA & THE HAITIAN REVOLUTION

KAFE NEGRO: CUBA & THE HAITIAN REVOLUTION

Regular price $395.00
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Kafe Negro: Cuba & The Haitian Revolution is a film that explores the social, economic & historical ramification of the Haitian Revolution on Cuba.

Kafe Negro tells the story of migrations around a small grain that became the second most important raw material on the global market. This film tells the story of the waves of migration of Haitian workers who, over time, profoundly transformed the culture and demographics of Cuba and developed coffee growing on the island.

Directed by Mario Delatour | Cuba & Haiti | 52min | 2020 | Documentary | French and Spanish with English subtitles

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KUESSIPAN
KUESSIPAN
KUESSIPAN
KUESSIPAN
KUESSIPAN
KUESSIPAN
KUESSIPAN
KUESSIPAN

KUESSIPAN

Regular price $395.00
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KUESSIPAN

The award-winning drama Kuessipan by Myriam Verreault was adapted from the acclaimed novel Kuessipan and co-written with the novel’s First Nation Canadian author Naomi Fontaine. Kuessipan means "your turn" in the Innu language, a title chosen to mark the notion that it is the Innu people's turn to tell their story.

“The Innu voice is ever present, which is so important as it offers a glimpse into their lives without a Colonial perspective. It's a feature that, while seemingly an obvious advantage, is hardly ever utilized for similar films. It means that audiences can enter the world in a respectful manner - which isn't to say the film shies away from the issues, but it does mean that those issues are approached in a confident and dignified way” writes Joel Kalkopf in his review for Switch.

The story follows two girls who grow up as best friends in a Quebec Innu community. While Mikuan has a loving family, Shaniss is picking up the pieces of her shattered childhood. As children, they promised each other to be lifelong friends. But as they mature, their lives take different paths, and their personal ambitions diverge leading them to a cultural and identity clash that tests their bond.

Directed by Myriam Verreault, Canada, 2019, 117min, Drama, Montagnais, French, English w/English subtitles

"Kuessipan is quiet and mesmerizing and tragic and full of hope. It is a triumph, and a privilege to spend time with." ~ Globe and Mail

"Myriam Verreault excels at crafting a film told through an Indigenous lens that discusses universal themes of friendship, identity, love, and heartbreak." ~ Exclaim!

"Kuessipan is a beautiful, un-sensationalized look at young womanhood, friendship and community." ~ NOW Toronto

"Heartbreakingly exploring Indigenous identity and the bonds that root us to a community, Kuessipan is a bold ode to young womanhood." ~ MUBI

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LOIMATA, THE SWEETEST TEARS
LOIMATA, THE SWEETEST TEARS
LOIMATA, THE SWEETEST TEARS
LOIMATA, THE SWEETEST TEARS

LOIMATA, THE SWEETEST TEARS

Regular price $395.00
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Loimata trailer from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo

With Ema diagnosed with terminal cancer, the Siope family searches for healing by confronting  intergenerational trauma head on and returning to their homeland of Sāmoa.

The redemptive tale of waka builder and captain Lilo Ema Siope’s final years, the stunning LOIMATA, The Sweetest Tears is a chronicle of journeys. Confronting intergenerational trauma head on, the Siope family returns to their homeland of Sāmoa. For Ema’s father, this is his first time back to his birthplace since leaving in 1959. The result is a poignant yet tender story of a family’s unconditional love for each other, and a commitment to becoming whole again.

By Anna Marbrook, New Zealand / Sāmoa. 2021, 94 minutes, Documentary, English & Samoan with English subtitles

"I walked into this film expecting to see a portrait of a world-renowned ship builder, navigator and sailor, undertaking one of the final voyages of her life. And, in a way, that is what Loimata is. But not in the way I was assuming it would be." ~ stuff.co.nz

Themes: First Nation / Women / Sexual Abuse / LGBTQ+ / Family / Healing 

AWARDS:

FIFO (Festival International du Film Documentaire Océanien), 2021 
Grand Prix du Jury 

NZTV Awards, 2021
Best Documentary, Winner
Best Director, Nominee

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MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA
MARIGHELLA

MARIGHELLA

Regular price $445.00
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MARIGHELLA

After fighting censorship for two years in Brazil, MARIGHELLA is now #1 at the Box Office in Brazil.

Marighella is a new Brazilian action drama set in 1969 based on the life of Afro-Brazilian politician and guerrilla fighter Carlos Marighella. Facing a violent military dictatorship and with little support from a timid opposition, writer-turned-politician Carlos Marighella organizes a resistance movement. Alongside revolutionaries 30 years younger than him and willing to fight, the revolutionary leader opts for action. The film is adapted from the biography Marighella - O Guerrilheiro que Incendiou o Mundo, by Mario Magalhaes. Brazilian musical artist, songwriter, and actor Seu Jorge plays Carlos Marighella.

Directed by Wagner Moura, 2019, Brazil, 155min, historical action drama, Portuguese w/ English subtitles

* Berlinale 2019 | Official Selection - Out of Competition
* INTERNATIONAL INDEPENDENT CRITICS PRIZE (Premio Giuseppe Becce)
* ONE OF SCREEN CRITICS' TOP FILMS FROM BERLIN 2019

"Angry and brutally necessary for the Brazil of today, Marighella is put together coolly and confidently by the green [Wagner] Moura." ~ One Room With A View

"Marighella works fine as an exciting and highly assured debut, with a terrific ensemble cast at its heart." ~ Hollywood Reporter

Visit film site 

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MINGA and the Broken Spoon
MINGA and the Broken Spoon
MINGA and the Broken Spoon
MINGA and the Broken Spoon
MINGA and the Broken Spoon
MINGA and the Broken Spoon
MINGA and the Broken Spoon
MINGA and the Broken Spoon

MINGA and the Broken Spoon

Regular price $395.00
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Minga and The Broken Spoon Trailer - ArtMattan from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

MINGA and the Broken Spoon

A charming animation for the entire family, this African fable tells the story of Minga, an orphaned girl living with her stepmother MamiKaba and her stepsister Abena. One day, when she washes the dishes in the river, she accidentally brakes a spoon. A furious MamiKaba chases her away from the house, asking her to find the only identical spoon hidden by her late mother. An adventurous journey then begins for Minga in the forest.

 Minga and the Broken Spoon is the first feature-length animated film entirely conceived and produced in Cameroon and is loosely based on “The Broken Spoon,” the famous African tale. The film is a vibrant tribute to Cameroon’s rich cultural diversity, while being a source of entertainment for the young and old alike.

By Claye Edou, Cameroon , 2019, 80 mins, animation in English.

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MOTO TAXI / BENDSKINS
MOTO TAXI / BENDSKINS
MOTO TAXI / BENDSKINS
MOTO TAXI / BENDSKINS

MOTO TAXI / BENDSKINS

Regular price $395.00
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MOTO TAXI / BENDSKINS

MOTO TAXI, Narcisse Wandji's first feature film, explores questions and concerns related to the daily life of three Cameroonians, two men and a woman, who manage to make a living working as motorcycle taxis.

Sani, Marie and Franck are three young moto-taxi drivers with unique destinies and stories. Sani has to face Charles, his employer and also father of Samedi, his girlfriend, who is pregnant with his child. Marie, raped five years ago, tries to find Tom, her rapist. And Franck, on his side, must do everything to get rid of the lifeless body of an 8 month old child.

In Moto Taxi, Narcisse Wandji refers both visually and through the dialogues in his film to some important auteurs in African Cinema. Quartier Mozart by Jean-Pierre Bekolo is mentioned casually in a conversation while a Moto Taxi driver explains that the corn on his motorcycle was inspired by Djibril Diop Mambety’s Touki Bouki.

These references reassure the cinephiles looking for cinematic innovation. The question of cultural identity remains at the heart of the auteur’s work while he/she strives to give a universal feel to his/her creation. “ Pierre Patrick Touko.

Directed by Narcisse Wandji, Cameroon, 2021, 90 mins, drama, French (with English subtitles)

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MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA
MYOPIA

MYOPIA

Regular price $395.00
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MYOPIA

Fatem, sixth month pregnant, leaves her village perched in the mountains, to fill a frame with empty glasses for the elder of her village, the only person who can decipher the letters sent by members of the villagers’ families who have gone to work in the cities. She moves from station to station to arrive in town in the middle of a protest. This will turn her trip into a peaceful revolution that she is hardly aware of.

Directed by Sanaa Akroud, Morocco 2020, 86min, drama, Arabic w/English subtitles

"A beautifully observed meditation on faith, perseverance and integrity, Moroccan director Sanae Akroud’s sophomore feature is an immersive and heart-breaking unique female saga. " ~ The Brazilian

"This film, which carries beautiful qualities of image and lighting, speaks of poverty, of the feminine condition and of a happiness so simple that one can hardly grasp its meaning nowadays. ~ La Presse

"Fatem is played by Sanaa Akroud, also the film's director. Akroud was in the acclaimed 2011 Egyptian film "Scheherazade, Tell Me a Story". In "Myopia" she is brilliant as our unsettlingly passive villager, whether inquiring about a letter from an absent husband or when wandering innocently through the city in search of an eyeglass shop." ~ Barbara Nimri Aziz

"She will be questioned by the police, defended by an association, interviewed by a journalist… She is accused of having endangered her baby, she is asked some of the most intrusive questions, but each person applies their own way of thinking - myopia of a society incapable of perceiving its difference. Agressive police officers falsely accused, activists urging her to press charges, sensationalist journalist who transforms news, even a listening minister… none understand that she only wants to fix the glasses." ~ Olivier Barlet

"It is in listening to these women that Sanaa Akroud wrote this script which she both interprets and directs. Apart from the interviews, she does it with few words. Wolfango Alfi's sequence shots respond to this desire to account for the time taken by everyday acts. They contribute to the open-mindedness called for by this film without a clear message, if not to invite people to understand that an equivocation is not a limit but a complexity." ~ Olivier Barlet

"This story is sure to resonate with many American viewers learning about the depth of racial disparities and the flaws in U.S. democracy where agents of ‘liberal’ society and opposition parties once again reach out to Black and Brown Americans and immigrants with shallow promises of equality and reform.Barbara Nimri Aziz

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NAOMI'S JOURNEY (Naomis Reise)
NAOMI'S JOURNEY (Naomis Reise)
NAOMI'S JOURNEY (Naomis Reise)
NAOMI'S JOURNEY (Naomis Reise)
NAOMI'S JOURNEY (Naomis Reise)
NAOMI'S JOURNEY (Naomis Reise)
NAOMI'S JOURNEY (Naomis Reise)
NAOMI'S JOURNEY (Naomis Reise)

NAOMI'S JOURNEY (Naomis Reise)

Regular price $345.00
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Naomi's Journey Trailer - ArtMattan Films from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

NAOMI'S JOURNEY

Twenty-year old Naomi lives a simple life with her younger siblings in Peru. Only her big sister seems to live a life of fortune, being married in Germany. But now she is dead, murdered by her German husband.

Stunned by the news, Naomi can't imagine accompanying her mother to Germany, the land of the crime. But then she changes her mind, becomes a joint plaintiff, and takes part in the trial in Berlin.

In Naomi's Journey Frieder Schleich (Otomo) continues to explore the life of immigrants in Germany.  His staging of a realistic trial using real-life lawyers illustrates the inner working of the German justice system and its dispassionate proceedings. 

"The film follows the murder trial of a young South American woman within the framework of a hidden women and marriage trafficking market. The film is about justice and objectivity in the German legal system." ~ Hof international film festival

Directed by Frieder Schlaich, 2018, Germany / Peru, 93min, legal thriller, German and Spanish with English subtitles.

 

"The director composes a haunting puzzle about moral standards, trust and cultural clashes." ~ Brazilian Press

"Rising star Scarlett Jaimes gives a compelling performance in the title role presenting the turbulence of a fragile young lady with brilliant nuance." ~ Brazilian Press

"It's a gripping, accurate courtroom drama." ~ Brazilian Press

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SHAIHU UMAR
SHAIHU UMAR
SHAIHU UMAR
SHAIHU UMAR
SHAIHU UMAR
SHAIHU UMAR
SHAIHU UMAR
SHAIHU UMAR

SHAIHU UMAR

Regular price $395.00
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SHAIHU UMAR

Didi Cheeka works as a director and film critic and has been working for years to reappraise the Nigerian film heritage. He initiated the archive project “Reclaiming History, Unveiling Memory” with the aim of restoring, digitizing and curating rediscovered Nigerian films.

SHAIHU UMAR is one of the most important works in Nigerian film history, but was long considered lost. Located in northern Nigeria at the end of the 19th century, the film is based on a novel by Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, who later became Nigeria’s first prime minister. Only the rediscovery of the camera negative in 2016 made the reconstruction of the film possible. The digitally restored version had its premiere at the Berlinale in February 2018.

Set in northern Nigeria towards the end of the 19th century, Shaihu Umar starts with a discussion between Islamic students and their renowned teacher, the wise man Shaihu Umar. Asked about his origins, Umar begins to tell his story: he comes from a modest background and is separated from his mother after his father dies and his stepfather is banished. His subsequent trials and tribulations are marked by slavery, and he is put to any number of tests until he finally becomes the adopted son of his Arabic master Abdulkarim. He attends Koran School and is made an imam upon reaching adulthood. Following a particular dream, he resolves to search for his mother.


Adamu Halilu filmed Shaihu Umar in Hausa in 1976. Arsenal - Institute for Film and Video Art restored the film with the support of the German Embassy in Abuja.

by Adamu Halilu, Epic Drama, Nigeria, 1976, 142', Hausa with English Subtitles.

WITH

Umaru Ladan (Shaihu Umar)
Mairiga Aliyu (Fatima)
Husaini Mohammed (Umar, 3 Jahre alt)
Umaru Dembo (Makau)
Assad Yasin (Abdulkarim)
Harira Kachia (Kaka)

CREW

Director
Adamu Halilu
Screenplay
Adamu Halilu, based on the novel of the same title by Abubakar Tafawa Balewa
Director of Photography
Yusuf Mohammed, Zakari Yusufu
Editing
Edwin Apim
Sound
Baba Gana
Production Design
Assad Yasin
Producers
Umaru Ladan, Umaru Dembo

BIOGRAPHY

Adamu Halilu

Born in the state of Adamawa, Nigeria in 1936. He studied screenwriting and editing in London. Along with his work as a feature film director, Adamu Halilu also wrote screenplays and took part in the production of almost 70 documentary films. Adamu Halilu died in 2001.

Filmography (selection)

1963 Mama Learns a Lesson; 48 min. 1971 Child Bride; 70 min. 1976 Shaihu Umar 1978 Kanta of Kebbi 1981 Moment of Truth; 90 min. 1982 Zainab

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2018


PRODUCED BY

Federal Ministry of Information (Federal Film Unit Kaduna)

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SHE HAD A DREAM
SHE HAD A DREAM
SHE HAD A DREAM
SHE HAD A DREAM
SHE HAD A DREAM
SHE HAD A DREAM

SHE HAD A DREAM

Regular price $395.00
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SHE HAD A DREAM - Young, Tunisian and Black

Ghofrane, 25, is a young Black Tunisian woman. A committed activist who speaks her mind, she embodies Tunisia's current political upheaval. As a victim of racial discrimination, Ghofrane decides to go into politics.

We follow her extraordinary path, ranging from acting on her ambition to be in politics to disillusion. Through her attempts to persuade both close friends and complete strangers to vote for her, her campaign reveals the many faces of a country seeking to forge a new identity.

In its own unique way, this documentary sheds light on the place of women and Black people in Tunisia's changing society.

Directed by Raja Amari, Tunisia, 2020, 90min, documentary, Arabic and French w/English subtitles

* IDFA 2020 - World Premiere

"Binous' determination to be an agent of change lends the film an engaging, upbeat energy that enhances its appeal..." ~ Screen International

"Effortlessly balancing the personal and the political - and the invisible line between them - the filmmaker offers a glimpse into the future of a better Tunisia through Binous's unique odyssey." ~ Film Inquiry

"As a Black woman from a working-class neighborhood in Tunisia, 25-year-old Ghofrane Binous has spent her whole life dealing with class inequality, racism, and sex discrimination. Following an extremely racist incident in 2018 while working as a flight attendant, she posted a cry for help on social media that was widely viewed, then joined a women’s movement and became politically active. The film follows this charismatic figure in the run-up to the 2019 national elections—during the turbulent campaign period, on the way to countless meetings, and in heated conversations with family members, friends, and party members.

The camera stays close to this young woman who is keen to perpetuate the myth of her own invulnerability—and maybe that’s exactly what she needs to do to rise to the top. The backdrop to her political ambition is a divided society where people have little confidence in their own democracy. Connecting it all is the voice-over in which Binous shares her vision of life, and her motivations for becoming politically active in a paternalistic, segregated society where women generally draw the shortest straw." IDFA

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Sugar Cane Malice / MAL DE CAÑA
Sugar Cane Malice / MAL DE CAÑA
Sugar Cane Malice / MAL DE CAÑA
Sugar Cane Malice / MAL DE CAÑA
Sugar Cane Malice / MAL DE CAÑA
Sugar Cane Malice / MAL DE CAÑA
Sugar Cane Malice / MAL DE CAÑA
Sugar Cane Malice / MAL DE CAÑA

Sugar Cane Malice / MAL DE CAÑA

Regular price $395.00
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SUGAR CANE MALICE / MAL DE CAÑA
 
A documentary about the working conditions of Haitian workers in one of the largest sugar cane plantations in the world, located in the Dominican Republic and belonging to the Fanjul Family, one of the most powerful families in America.
 

When Maria’s husband died, she was told to either leave the sugarcane plantation or to work in the only existent job: cutting and planting cane.

She decided to work in exchange for a miserable wage and a rudimentary barrack she and her five children call home. With that, she was accepting a precarious life without electricity, drinkable water and sanitary services. This is how people are stuck in a house provided by the Company, ensuring that no other basic service neither civil rights are provided, maintaining people in a life of misery. The vast extension of a sugarcane plantation in Dominican Republic offers this deal to thousands of Haitian workers. Some struggle to leave – like Maria’s daughter, with few chances of working in a hotel by the coast. Some others are forced to leave – like Leidy and her baby, when her father-in-law retires after 50 years of work. Yet, some others – like Yudelka and Telemin – organize and try to change the miserable situation everyone is living in the cane fields. They are an obstacle that hinders the functioning of the great machine that is the Plantation.

Directed by Juan A. Zapata, Dominican Republic/Spain, 2021, 76min, Documentary, Spanish w/English subtitles

 Sugar Cane Malice is the third film from director [Juan A.] Zapata, a native of the Dominican Republic, who is also an architect and visual artist. Both sensibilities are on display in Sugar Cane Malice, which pays particular attention to the built environment of the workers, and contrasts it through a series of helicopter (or drone) shots with modern construction in the island’s cities and the luxurious beach resorts that are beloved of tourists. He also finds beauty even in the sugar cane fields where these workers labor for the benefits of others. Above all, he respects the dignity of his subjects, who haven’t let their difficult lives become their only story." ~ Sarah Boslaugh

AWARDS

FULL FRAME Documentary Film Festival 2021
Official Competition 

Festival des Libertés 2021
Official Competition 

EATSA Art & Tourism is an International Film Festival 2021
Official Competition 

SOMCINEMA Festival (Spain) 2021
Official Competition 

Architecture Film Festival Rotterdam 2021
Official Competition

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THE ESMERALDAS BEACH
THE ESMERALDAS BEACH
THE ESMERALDAS BEACH
THE ESMERALDAS BEACH
THE ESMERALDAS BEACH
THE ESMERALDAS BEACH
THE ESMERALDAS BEACH
THE ESMERALDAS BEACH

THE ESMERALDAS BEACH

Regular price $395.00
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The Esmeraldas Beach Trailer  from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

THE ESMERALDAS BEACH 

In today’s Ecuador, the black population, the descendants of enslaved Africans, continue to experience strong racial and social discrimination. Yet people in the community still strive to value their specific culture and transmit the rebellious memory of their ancestors who fought for freedom. The Es­meraldas Beach sets out to expose the invisibility of Afro-Ecuadorians and rectify the narrative of the country’s history with the film’s central protagonist, Juan García, who has worked on that project for years. He developed a school book that presents black Ecuadorians prominently since the only Afro-descendants shown in local school books are portrayed next to a marimba and football.  The documentary also addresses the 1999 assassination of Prime Minister Jaime Hurtado, the first Black to hold this office.

Directed by Patrice Raynal, 2020, France/Ecuador, 58 minutes, documentary, French and Spanish with English subtitles.

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THE MALI-CUBA CONNECTION / AFRICA MIA
THE MALI-CUBA CONNECTION / AFRICA MIA
THE MALI-CUBA CONNECTION / AFRICA MIA
THE MALI-CUBA CONNECTION / AFRICA MIA
THE MALI-CUBA CONNECTION / AFRICA MIA
THE MALI-CUBA CONNECTION / AFRICA MIA
THE MALI-CUBA CONNECTION / AFRICA MIA
THE MALI-CUBA CONNECTION / AFRICA MIA

THE MALI-CUBA CONNECTION / AFRICA MIA

Regular price $395.00
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In the midst of the Cold War, ten young promising musicians from Mali are sent to Cuba to study music and strengthen cultural links between the two socialist countries. Combining Malian and Afro-Cuban influences, they develop a revolutionary new sound and become the iconic ensemble ‘Las Maravillas de Mali’. New Year’s Eve 2000. Richard Minier, a French music producer meets a former member of the band in Bamako and decides to bring the band back together.

Directed by Edouard Salier and Richard Minier | 2020 | 81min | France, Cuba, Mali | Documentary | Spanish, French with English subtitles

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THE SLEEPING NEGRO
THE SLEEPING NEGRO
THE SLEEPING NEGRO
THE SLEEPING NEGRO
THE SLEEPING NEGRO
THE SLEEPING NEGRO

THE SLEEPING NEGRO

Regular price $395.00
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WINNER!
* FIPRESCI Award, International Film Festival Mannheim-Heidelberg 2022, Germany
* VISIONARY AWARD , Cinequest 2022

Confronted with a series of racially charged incidents, a young black man must overcome rage, alienation, and hopelessness in order to find his own humanity.

The young black man, simply identified as “Man,” must resolve the personal meaning of his blackness when his white boss orders him to commit fraud to benefit the corporation. Struggling with an overwhelming sense of shame for going through with the illegal demand, Man seeks consolation by discussing his unease with a black former friend and his white fiancé. Those conversations lead only to further confusion and frustrations...

Following on the footstep of the LA Rebellion filmmakers, Skinner Myers tells a very personal and intimate Black story in a radically non-traditional cinematic style as a means to express freely his feelings as a Black man in America.

 

By Skinner Myers, USA, 2021, 72min, Drama, English

 

 "A superb character study of a black man, how he sees himself and how he was treated by society, it is surreal yet real and terrifying." ~ Ulkar Alakbarova, moviemovesme.com

"Remaining asleep to Myers as an African-American is a sin, but so is to be completely awake to the point where love for the self is all but embraced. In this impassioned, vigorous, lucid cinematic journey, the bleak, bruised-yet-fighting spirit of one Kendrick Lamar’s and every other prominent African artist strikes like lightning, and resonates like thunder. Like the greats, Myers, is a voice in his lane to place one’s focus on; his artistry effortlessly commanding, a feat implying many more to be accomplished in a budding career in American independent filmmaking." LOUIE BAHAROM, cinephiliaph.wordpress.com

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Double dvds

AFRICAN IMMIGRANTS IN EUROPE:  OTOMO & WAALO FENDO

AFRICAN IMMIGRANTS IN EUROPE: OTOMO & WAALO FENDO

Regular price $395.00
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OTOMO

A powerful film portraying institutionalized racism and police brutality, Otomo provides a convincing look at the everyday world of refugees, who are continuously surrounded by tension and insecurity.

In the summer of 1989, a Stuttgart newspaper reported the true story of a West African asylum seeker who physically assaulted an intolerant subway ticket-taker; fled, and became the target of a city-wide manhunt. Otomo is a sober, fictionalized reconstruction of a tale that shocked Stuttgart, and a gripping portrait of how institutionalized racism drives a disempowered individual to violence and inhumanity.

West African immigrant Frederic Otomo (Isaach de Bankole) lacks the proper papers to be hired for the most menial of jobs; he has survived for eight years with the help of a Catholic charity. Otomo is the target of verbal abuse, is thrown out of his boarding house, and even scorned by neighborhood dogs. He feels and looks out of place. A stoic bubbling pot of wrath on the run, de Bankole's performance establishes Otomo's essence without words-language cannot express the gravity of his situation. As a ticking soundtrack counts down his fated minutes, Otomo is helped by a kind, aging hippie and her granddaughter, establishing the potential for an inclusive German society….if it is not too late...

|Germany|1999|84 mins|drama|German with English subtitles|Frieder Schlaich, dir.|

"I was impressed by the decision to make Otomo a bit of an anti-hero, seeming aware that in desperate times, good people may say or do things outside the norm." -- Greg Dean Schmitz, Greg's previews at Yahoo!Movies

"Documents the institutionalized racism and xenophobia that painted one man into a corner, while never excusing the terrible means by which he took his final escape." -- Jessica Winter, Village Voice

"Much of the sense of size in this account of an immigrant worker, who is only one among many thousands in Germany, comes from the performance by Isaach de Bankole." -- Stanley Kauffmann, New Republic

 


WAALO FENDO: WHERE THE EARTH FREEZES

Senegal / Switzerland, 1998, 65 mins, drama in Wolof and Italian with English subtitles, Mohammed Soudani, dir.

Milan, like Paris or Stuttgart, and like many other European cities, is the theater of the drama of immigration. Demba reconstructs his story and that of his brother Yaro, both Senegalese immigrants in Italy, in a long and fragmentary flashback that begins with Yaro’s murder and recounts their departure from the village, arrival in Europe, the work they find selling lighters and picking tomatoes in the south of Italy: the stages every “non-EEC citizen” goes through in Italy. It is a story of immigration like so many others but that most people are unaware of. Waalo Fendo illustrates the dehumanization faced by so many immigrants all over the world.

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AFRICAN LEADERS

AFRICAN LEADERS

Regular price $795.00
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Portrait of two leaders of the Pan-African Liberation Movement: Frantz Fanon and Amilcar Cabral.

Using rare archival footage, director Ana Lucia Ramos Lisboa accurately chronicles both the personal and public sides of an African icon in Amilcar Cabral (Cape Verde/ Portugal, 2001, 52 mins., in Portuguese with English Subtitles). The founder of the African Party for Independence of Guinea Bissau and Cape Verde (PAIGC), Amilcar Cabral led the Liberation Movement against Portugal for those countries.

 

Frantz Fanon

 In the documentary Frantz Fanon: His Life, His Struggle, His Work (Algeria/France, 2001, 52 mins., in French and Arabic with English subtitles), director Cheikh Djemai uncovers and interviews scores of former associates of Frantz Fanon, a psychiatrist, philosopher and political leader. He became a spokesperson for the Algerian revolution against French colonialism, and as the author of Black Skin, White Masks, Fanon documented the effects of colonialism and racism on the people of colonized countries.

Amilcar Cabral

Amilcar Cabral was the leader of the Liberation Movement of Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau and the founder of the African Party for the Independence of Guinea Bissau and Cape Verde (PAIGC). He was born in Guinea in 1924 and assassinated in Conakry in 1973. Regarded as a true icon of African history, this documentary provides considerable background to this revolutionary giant and reveals Cabral in several dimensions: as a man, a father, politician, humanist and poet.

The documentary is skillfully produced and uses a wealth of rare archive footage, balanced inclusion of varied testimonies of important African personalities and the credible recreation of notable episodes of Cabral's life.

 

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AFRICAN STORYTELLERS

AFRICAN STORYTELLERS

Regular price $395.00
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Two African Griots connect Africa and the World: Youssou N’Dour in Return to Gorée by Pierre-Yves Borgeau, Sotigui Kouyaté in Names Live Nowhere by Dominique Loreau. DVD also includes Youssou N’Dour’s live concert performance on Gorée Island. 

 

 

RETURN TO GOREE Film and Concert

RETURN TO GOREE follows Senegalese singer Youssou N'Dour's historical journey tracing the trail left by enslaved Africans and the jazz music they invented. Youssou N'Dour's challenge is to bring back to Africa a jazz repertoire of his own songs to perform a concert in Goree, the island that today symbolizes the slave trade and stands to honor its victims. With Youssou N'Dour, Moncef Genoud, Joseph Ndiaye, Idris Muhammad, and Amiri Baraka among others.

DVD includes filmed final concert on the Goree Island.

RETURN TO GOREE / CONCERT, Pierre Yves Borgeaud, Senegal/Switzerland/
Luxembourg, 2006, 108 min. / 52min. In English and French with English subtitles.

 

NAMES LIVE NOWHERE 

NAMES LIVE NOWHERE (Les Noms N'Habitent Nulle Part) - whose title is a Senegalese proverb - a griot (story teller) traveling from Dakar to Brussels weaves a tale about African expatriates and offers a candid look at the life of African immigrants in Belgium. With Sotigui Kouyate - a real life griot - as the story teller.

NAMES LIVE NOWHERE, Dominique Loreau, Belgium, 1994 , 76min. In French with English subtitles.

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AFRICAN WOMEN
AFRICAN WOMEN
AFRICAN WOMEN
AFRICAN WOMEN

AFRICAN WOMEN

Regular price $395.00
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Two fiction films that explore the life of women in Africa. Set in Burkina Fasso AN UNCOMMON WOMAN is a comedy about a cuckold woman who decides to take a second husband. CAPE VERDE MY LOVE is drama that takes a critical look at the lives of women in contemporary Cape Verde.

 

AN UNCOMMON WOMAN

Mina is tired of her husband's infidelity and decides to take a drastic decision: She takes a second husband. Based on his conversations with women involved in polygamist relationships, he illustrates - to very funny effects - the daily life of two persons - in this case two men - who share a spouse. On a comedic tone, Abdoulaye Dao tells us a story of jealousy, infidelity, romance and revenge. Directed by Dao Abdoulaye, 2009, 101 min, Burkina Faso, Comedy, French with English subtitles.

An Uncommon Woman-Une Femme Pas Comme Les Autres- was a success in its native Burkina Faso and is cast with some the best actors of Burkinabe cinema.

Official selection, African Diaspora International Film Festival 2010.

 

CAPE VERDE MY LOVE

Praia, Cape Verde. Laura, Flavia and Bela are childhood friends. Each leads her own life and they sometimes meet to dance, dine and have fun. But one day the calm rivers of their lives break their banks and become wild torrents: Ricardo, Flavia's husband, rapes his pupil Indira, Laura's 13-year old eldest daughter. A film that takes a critical look at the lives of women in Cape Verde .

By Ana Lucia Ramos Lisboa, 2007, Cape Verde, Drama, 77min, Cape Verdean Portuguese w/ English subtitles.

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AFRO-BRAZILIAN LEADERS

AFRO-BRAZILIAN LEADERS

Regular price $395.00
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Revealing films about two very important Afro-Brazilian figures:

* Abdias do Nascimento (March 14, 1914 - May 23, 2011) was an outspoken and vibrant defender of Afro-Brazilian civil rights.
* Natalino Jose do Nacimento, better known as Natal Da Portela (July 31, 1905- April 5, 1975) was one of the founders and major sponsor of the Portela Samba School in Rio de Janeiro, champion of the 2017 Carnival parade.

ABDIAS DO NASCIMENTO

Loving and revealing documentary about Afro-Brazilian scholar/writer/activist /politician Abdias do Nascimento (1914-2011), a significant figure in and leader of Brazil’s Black movement who founded the Black Experimental Theater in 1944 and was very active in the international Pan-African Movement.
Directed by Aida Marques, 2011, 95 min, Brazil, Documentary, Portuguese with English subtitles.

NATAL DA PORTELA

The name ‘Natal da Portela’ is historically attached to the cultural identity of Brazil. Natal da Portela created the first escola de samba in Rio de Janeiro. The schools of samba are the soul of carnival in Brazil and major reservoirs of Afro-Brazilian culture. The film depicts the life of Natal da Portela as a young man from the favelas--the slums of the northern part of Rio de Janeiro--up to the creation of “la Portela”, the school of samba he created.

Directed by Paulo Cezar Saraceni, 1988, 100min, Brazil, Drama, Portuguese with English subtitles.

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AFRO-CUBA: YESTERDAY & TODAY

AFRO-CUBA: YESTERDAY & TODAY

Regular price $295.00
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Two exciting, colorful films spotlight the African roots of Cuba's culture by focusing on two legendary artists -- Rumbero Papa Montero and Filmmaker Sara Gomez -- in this unique box set.

THE LAST RUMBA OF PAPA MONTERO / LA ULTIMA RUMBA DE PAPA MONTERO

Get ready to rumba! The life of Cuba s last great rumbero is detailed in THE LAST RUMBA OF PAPA MONTERO, a bold story that captures Cuban traditions and culture through beautiful imagery, sensual music, and the most scorching Latin dance ever invented. Afro-Cuban mythology serves as the force behind the narrative as mythic figures guide the characters through the events of the story.

| Cuba/Martinique | 1992 | 52 mins | docu-drama in Spanish with English subtitles | Octavio Cortazar, Dir. |

“Montero is a celebration of rumba as heart and soul for a colorful Cuban landscape." - SLANT

 

SARA GOMEZ: AN AFRO-CUBAN FILMMAKER

Acclaimed filmmaker Sara Gomez comes to life in the rich, multilayered documentary SARA GOMEZ: AN AFRO-CUBAN FILMMAKER. Though trained in ethnography, Gomez became the first female Cuban filmmaker. Her background shaped her films, which reflect her interests in Afro-Cuban cultural traditions and women s issues. Friends and family members recall her talent, intelligence, and generosity. Ultimately SARA GOMEZ is a love story between Sara and her husband (filmmaker Germinal Hernandez), Sara and her family, and Sara and her culture.

| Cuba/Switzerland | 2005 | 76 min | documentary in Spanish with English subtitles | Alessandra Muller, Dir. |

"[SARA GOMEZ] is an extremely important documentary.... " - Kwame Dixon, SCOPE

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BLACK & LATINO

BLACK & LATINO

Regular price $345.00
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Two films that  explore the Black & Latino experience.

Set in the USA, INVISIBLE COLOR: AFRO-CUBANS IN MIAMI is a documentary about the history and  living experience of Afro-Cubans in Miami.



MESTIZO is a drama set in 1940 Venezuela about the conflicted identity of José Vargas, the  illegitimate son of a white colonial administrator and a poor black  fisher-woman.

INVISIBLE COLOR:  AFRO-CUBANS IN MIAMI

This latest documentary by the Dean of Afro-Cuban Cinema, Sergio Giral, investigates the black Cuban exile community in South Florida, since the first wave of political refugees in the 1959 revolutionary aftermath, to today. It tracks its presence throughout the region, and highlights its contribution to Miami’s civic culture through testimonies and visual documentation.

Directed by Sergio Giral / 2017 / USA / Cuba / English and Spanish with English subtitles / 47 min.

MESTIZO

The action takes place in a village on the Venezuelan coast, a place of fishermen and big haciendas. Jose Ramon, son of a white aristocrat and a humble black fisher-women, is trying to  define his own identity while dealing with social and sexual conflicts, power, culture, the law, and the impossible relationship he has with both his parents.

Directed by Mario Handler / 1989 / Venezuela / Spanish with English  subtitles / 82 Min.

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BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS
BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS
BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS
BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS
BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS
BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS
BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS
BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS
BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS
BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS

BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA & THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS

Regular price $395.00
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Two films that explore the life of black people in Latin America.  BLACK MEXICAN / LA NEGRADA is the first Mexican feature film about the Afro-Mexican community, THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS is a documentary about Afro-Chilean struggle to organize the first African census in the history of Chile.

 

BLACK MEXICANS / LA NEGRADA

Black Mexicans Trailer Eng Sub - ArtMattan Films from ArtMattan Productions on Vimeo.

DIRECTED BY JORGE PEREZ SOLANO
MEXICO/ 2018/ 104 MIN / DRAMA  IN SPANISH WITH ENGLISH


SYNOPSIS

 

Black Mexicans (La Negrada) is the first Mexican feature film about the Afro-Mexican community, filmed entirely with people from different towns around the Costa Chica in Oaxaca.

Neri, a fisherman, splits his time between two women: his wife Juanita with whom he has a daughter and his lover Magdalena, mother of three additional children. Things are about to change for Neri as Juanita falls gravely ill and Magdalena prepares to take her place.

Shot entirely in the beautiful beaches of Corralera in Oaxaca and featuring a cast of non-professional actors from the nearby communities, Black Mexicans explores the social mores of and the discrimination faced by Mexico’s little known black community.


THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS / EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS

 

In the Azapa Valley (Chile), an oasis in the driest desert in the world, a group of descendants of enslaved men and women brought from Africa are organizing the first African census in the history of Chile. Their aim is to get official recognition from the State that has concealed their culture and African identity for more than 200 years.

Directed by  Ric.hard Salgado, Chile, 2017, 52 min, documentary, Spanish with English subtitle.

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BLACK WOMEN SPEAK OUT!

BLACK WOMEN SPEAK OUT!

Regular price $295.00
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Revealing films that give a voice to black women in the developing world:
Sexy Money is a wrenching testimony of the challenges faced by two women in Nigeria struggling to navigate a corrupt and ruthless capitalist and sexist environment.
* Looking for Life follows two Haitian women's daily work and the constant battle for survival that they lead together with other women in Haiti.

SEXY MONEY

SEXY MONEY presents a subtle indictment of the social reality of poor women in contemporary Nigeria.

A reflection of the difficult social conditions of women in many societies in different parts of the world, SEXY MONEY explores frontally with much sensitivity and compassion the broken hopes and hard choices of poor Nigerian women as they struggle to reintegrate Nigerian society with dignity after being expelled from Europe where they were looking for a better life.
Directed by Karin Junger, 2014, 85 min, Nigeria/ Netherlands, documentary, English.

LOOKING FOR LIFE

LOOKING FOR LIFE introduces the viewer to two women, Anne-Rose and Rosemene, who each one has their own particular way of battling through life. The former makes lunches in a  factory yard in Port-au-Prince and sells her meals to the factory workers on credit; the latter is employed in the same factory as a production worker making pullovers and T-shirts.
By Claudette Coulanges, 1999, Haiti/Germany, Documentary, 60min, Haitian Creole w/ English subtitles.

 

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BLACKS IN EUROPE

BLACKS IN EUROPE

Regular price $445.00
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Two documentaries that explore the life of black people in Europe. GURUMBÉ: AFRO-ANDALUSIAN MEMORIES is a documentary that explores the contribution of Africans to Spain from the 15th to the 18th  centuries.THE BLACK MOZART IN CUBA celebrates the The Chevalier de Saint-Georges, a remarkable man who lived in France in the 18th century.

GURUMBE

Flamenco is synonymous with Spanish culture. Yet, since its inception, theorists have sidelined the fundamental contribution of Afro-Andalusians to this art form. As the black population began to diminish in Spain in the late 19th century, so too did their contribution to this extraordinary art form. In Gurumbé: Afro-Andalusian Memories, their story is finally told.
Directed by M. Angel Rosales, 2016, Spain/Mexico/Portugal/Senegal, documentary, 72min, Spanish and Portuguese w/ English subtitles.

 

 

BLACKS MOZART IN CUBA

Joseph Boulogne, Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745-1799), became one of the most remarkable figures of the 18th century. He influenced the music and political life of his time. He was a genius composer and conductor, a virtuoso violinist, the best fencer in Europe, as well as the first black general in the French army.

Directed by Steve James, Stephanie James, 2008, 52 min, Guadeloupe, Documentary, English, French, Spanish with English subtitles.

 

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BLACKS IN LATIN AMERICA

BLACKS IN LATIN AMERICA

Regular price $395.00
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 This is a 2-DVD set featuringTango Negro: The African Roots of Tango (Argentina and Uruguay) a revealing documentary that traces the origins of tango back to the slave trade between Africa and South America and explains how the music and dance evolved into a Latin American form with myriad styles and La Playa D.C. from Colombia (Official Selection, Cannes 2012 and 2013 Colombia Oscar submission), about an Afro-Colombian teenager who fled the country's Pacific coast pushed out by the war, and faces the difficulties of growing up in the city of Bogota. 

TANGO NEGRO: THE AFRICAN ROOTS OF TANGO

Tango Negro, The African Roots of Tango by Angolan filmmaker Dom Pedro explores the expression of Tango’s Africanness and the contribution of African cultures in the creation of the tango. Tango was a reflection of the social life of the enslaved Africans that were taken to South America - including Argentina and Uruguay - mostly from central Africa, particularly from the former Kongo Kingdom. Director Dom Pedro reveals the depth of the footprints of the African music on the tango, through this rich movie combining musical performances and interviews from many tango fans and historians in Latin America and Europe, including the renowned Argentinean pianist Juan Carlos Caceres. Directed by Dom Pedro, 2013, 93 min., France, Documentary, French/Spanish/ English subt.

 

 

LA PLAYA DC

Tomas, a young black boy driven from Colombia’s Pacific coast by the war, tries to get by in Bogota, a city of exclusion and racism. Looking for Jairo, his younger brother and closest friend lost in the streets, Tomas sets out on an initiatory journey that will test his courage, nostalgia and the wounds of the past.  Directed by Juan Andres Arango, 2013, Colombia, Drama, 90 min, Spanish, English subt

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COLORS OF CURACAO

COLORS OF CURACAO

Regular price $295.00
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This two-DVD set featuring classic film "Ava & Gabriel: A Love Story" and contemporary drama "Papa's Song" serves as a window into the charming world of Curacao, part of the Dutch-owned Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean.

 

AVA & GABRIEL

Writer Norman DePalm offers two romantic dramas that bring to light the culture and character of the island. Set in Curacao in the 1940s, "Ava & Gabriel: A Love Story" (Felix de Rooy, 1990, 100 mins.) tells of the painter Gabriel Goedbloed, who arrives from Holland to paint a mural of the Virgin Mary in St. Anna's Church. Although Gabriel is there at the request of St. Anna's parish priest, the clergy and local citizens are surprised to find that he is black--originally from Surinam. The colonial Antillian society proves less than tolerant towards the visitor, especially after he chooses as his model a young teacher, Ava, who is engaged to a white police official. When the Dutch Governor's wife also becomes interested in Gabriel, tensions and hypocrisies rise within the community.

Directed by Felix de Rooy, Netherelands/France, 1990, Drama, Dutch and Papiamento with English subtitles

 

PAPA'S SONG

Addressing the complex and difficult state of race relations in the Netherlands, "Papa's Song" (Sander Francken, 1999, 95 mins.) is "an interesting drama of domestic tension and cross-cultural misunderstanding" (The New York Times).

The peaceful life of a Dutch magistrate, his wife from Curacao, and her two young nephews, turns suddenly volatile when the wife's sister arrives on the scene. The sisters' stormy relationship is complicated when the wife, unable to have children, tries to convince her husband to impregnate her sister.

In Dutch and Papiamento with English subtitles. Directed by Felix de Rooy/Sander Francken---Netherlands/Curacao---1990/1999---195 mins.

 

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CONGO: WHITE KING, RED RUBBER, BLACK DEATH + BOMA TERVUREN, THE JOURNEY

CONGO: WHITE KING, RED RUBBER, BLACK DEATH + BOMA TERVUREN, THE JOURNEY

Regular price $245.00
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CONGO: WHITE KING, RED RUBBER, BLACK DEATH

DIRECTED BY PETER BATE 
CONGO AND BELGIUM / 2003 / ENGLISH / 90 MIN
SYNOPSIS

This true, astonishing story of what King Leopold II did in the Congo was forgotten for over 50 years. “ Congo:White King, Red Rubber, Black Death” describes how King Leopold II of Belgium turned Congo into its private colony between 1885 and 1908. Under his control, Congo became a gulag labor camp of shocking brutality. Leopold posed as the protector of Africans fleeing Arab slave-traders but, in reality, he carved out an empire based on terror to harvest rubber. Families were held as hostages, starving to death if the men failed to produce enough wild rubber. Children's hands were chopped off as punishment for late deliveries. The Belgian government has denounced this documentary as a "tendentious diatribe" for depicting King Leopold II as the moral forebear of Adolf Hitler, responsible for the death of 10 million people in his rapacious exploitation of the Congo. Yet, it is agreed today that the first Human Rights movement was spurred by what happened in the Congo.

"(a) stunning indictment of Belgium's brutal colonization of the Congo in the late 19th century. "~VARIETY

"Evokes the ignorance of a country that would rather look up to its ugly past than down." ~ SLANT MAGAZINE

"A journey into the original “Heart of Darkness”."~ NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

DIRECTOR AND CAST

Director: Peter Bate
Starring: Roger May
Starring: Nicholas Fraser 
Starring: Steve Driesen 
 

GENRES

  • Documentary
  • Bonus Documentary with DVD: BOMA TERVUREN, THE JOURNEY 

BOMA TERVUREN, THE JOURNEY

DIRECTED BY FRANCIS DUJARDIN
BELGIUM / 1999 / FRENCH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 54 MIN

SYNOPSIS

The extraordinary and tragic saga of 267 Congolese, brought to Brussels for the 1897 World's Fair. After some four months of travel towards Belgium, they are exhibited before a million visitors. Subjected to the crushing gaze of the "Whites" and the cold climate, many fell prey to disease and even some lost their lives. The dead were hastily dispatched in a common grave, sparking a fierce debate in Belgian society. The project was overblown, but necessary in the eyes of the first colonizers, who presumed to have tamed the far-flung savages. One hundred years later, Congolese compatriots return to the scene of these events and question the "Whites" of today on the incredible story of that "human zoo". They carry out the ritual of "a return to the earth" by way of reparation for too great a hurt… A film that revisits a century of stereotyped conceptions about the Africans. And running through it, the almost aching question: "How is today different?"

DIRECTOR AND CAST

Director: Frances Dujardin
 

GENRES

  • Documentary

 
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GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 1

GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 1

Regular price $395.00
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GREAT AFRICAN FILMS:  VOLUME 1 : Haramuya & Faraw! Mother of the Dunes - Two films are included in the package, making for an entertaining and edifying double feature experience: Drissa Toure’s Haramuya (1995) is a dramatic comedy about several generations of a traditional Muslim family scraping up against various temptations (crime, movies, drugs, music) of modernity in the city of Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, and Abbdoulaye Ascofare’s Faraw: Mother of the Dunes (1997), from Mali is about a mother of three who struggles to support her family while saving her daughter from becoming the concubine-maid of a French colonialist. 

FARAW! MOTHER OF THE DUNES

Zamiatou is the mother of two quarrelsome boys and a depressed teenage girl. She is also the wife of a man arrested for political reasons who returns from prison mentally and physically destroyed. She struggles hard to survive in a poor and desolate area. She is ready to face anything to keep the family alive except prostituting her beautiful daughter. Her determination will take her far from her family… Detail by detail, this finely lensed first feature salutes the triumph of human ingenuity over terrible odds.


| Mali|1997| 90min | drama in Songhai with English subtitles | Abbdoulaye Ascofare, Dir. |
Best Actress, FESPACO 1997. Cannes 1997 Official Selection, International Critics Week.

“One of the strongest portraits of female determination to come out of Africa in recent years.” ~ VARIETY



HARAMUYA

Ouagadougou, its buildings and shantytowns... Wealth in a modern town and poverty in the suburbs. Through Fousseini — a Muslim firmly attached to his faith, traditions and family, Haramuya draws a picture of Ouagadougou trapped between modernism and traditionalism. Fousseini tries to take care of his family according to the old precepts and the code of honor inherited from his ancestors. One of his sons is a cinema projectionist and supports all the family against the will of his wife. The other son idles around all day long in Ouagadougou, looking for a girlfriend.

| Burkina Faso/France |1995 | 87min |comedy in French with English subtitles |Drissa Toure, Dir. |
Official selection, Cannes 1995 “Un Certain Regard.”

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GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2
GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2

GREAT AFRICAN FILMS: VOLUME 2

Regular price $395.00
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GREAT AFRICAN FILMS, VOLUME 2: Tasuma / Sia, the Dream of the Python -
The second installment in this series of award-winning films from Africa includes Kollo Sanou's Tasuma, the Fighter (2003, 90 minutes, French and Jula with English subtitles), a look at the impact of French colonialism on Africa; Former Senegalese tirailleurs, Burkinabe soldier Sogo Sanou waits patiently for his pension, which he plans to use to build a grain mill for the women of his village; Inspired by the seventh-century myth of the Wagadu people of Western Africa is Dani Kouyate's Sia, the Dream of the Python (2001, 96 minutes, Bambara with English subtitles): To bring back prosperity to his village, a King decides to make a human sacrifice to the mystical snake god; Sia, the most beautiful woman in the village, is chosen for the ritual, but she runs away in revolt. - 186 minutes.

 

TASUMA, THE FIGHTER

Sogo Sanou, a.k.a. Tasuma, is a former French soldier, a part of the African troops better known as “tiralleurs senegalais” who fought in the French wars in Europe and its colonial territories. He was a soldier in the wars of Indochina and Algeria. Although an honored veteran, Tasuma spends decades painfully waiting for his small pension, an amount that in his native Burkina Faso represents a fortune, even though it will equal only a small fraction of the amount paid to his French counterparts.

In a scene that takes us back to another African classic, The Money Order by Ousmane Sembene, Tasuma impulsively buys a treadmill for the women in his village with the money represented by his future pension payment, although he doesn’t know exactly when it will come through.

The money does not arrive, and our hero is in trouble and out of patience. With his old rifle he walks into the pension plan administrator’s office and demands his money. He ends up in jail, and it is up to the women from the village to come down to the city to free Tasuma. Tasuma the Fighter, is a portrait of a bureaucratic adventure that, even 60 years after World War II and 44 years after the independence movement in Africa, is not yet resolved.

As Kollo Daniel Sanou, the director of Tasuma, points out: “The story of Tasuma is also the narration of a historic mismatch, that of the particular status of those former combatants of the African troupes in the French Army.”

|Burkina Faso|2003| 90min | comedy in French/Moore with English subtitles | Daniel Kollo Sanou, Dir. |
Winner Bronze Yennenga Stallion, FESPACO 2005

"Tasuma camouflages its razor-sharp indignation with warmth and disarming grace" ~ VILLAGE VOICE

"Director and writer Kollo Daniel Sanou is in a becalmed, idyllic state of mind, as he leans back and lets this mildly satiric parable unfold." ~ THE NEW YORK TIMES


SIA: THE DREAM OF THE PYTHON

Kombi is a poverty-stricken city dominated by a tyrant king. In order to bring back prosperity, the king is advised by his priests to make the traditional human sacrifice of a young virgin to a mystical snake god. Sia, the most beautiful young woman of the village, has been designated. Lieutenant Mamadi, her fiancé, rebels against the decision to perform this ritual, and the village becomes divided. Struggles and revelations follow as the characters confront issues of honor, corruption and power.

| Burkina Faso/France |2001 | 96min |Epic Drama in Bambara with English subtitles |Dani Kouyaté, Dir. |
Winner “Special Prize of the Jury” FESPACO 2001 - Official Selection Cannes 2001.


“A delightful, pointed fable of religious and political extremism that's extra-relevant at present” ~ Dennis Harvey - VARIETY

 

"Delivers a powerful commentary on how governments lie, no matter who runs them" NEW YORK POST

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