Themed Cycles

20 films for 2020 - Cinémathèque Afrique

Cycle Cinémathèque Afrique

9 films

In 2018, the Institut français and the CNC launched a plan to restore and promote African film heritage. The idea is to make the films restored available to the general public in Africa, France and the rest of the world, and the initial goal was to get 20 films back onto screens in 2020, focusing in particular on films in the collections of the Institut français' Cinémathèque Afrique and the CNC. So far, eight films have been restored. They have been screened at prestigious festivals such as Cannes Classic, the Lumière Film Festival, FESPACO, Il Cinema Ritrovato, in Bologna, and Budapest Classics Film Marathon.

20 films for 2020 - Cinémathèque Afrique
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  • 1983
  • Burkina Faso
  • 11min

The Platters

by Idrissa Ouedraogo

The young people of the Mossi villages in northern Burkina Faso are leaving for the towns. Meanwhile, their elders persist with traditional crafts such as making wooden platters - a laborious process involving all the stages from felling the tree to selling the finished article. The meticulous work of carving is made harder by the fact that they have only basic tools at their disposal. Restored in 2K by Eclair in 2019.

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  • Adventure
  • 1977
  • Niger
  • 14min

Samba le grand

by Moustapha Alassane

The adventures of a legendary hero who is dazzled by the beauty of a princess and asks for her hand in marriage. She sets him several tasks which he succeeds in carrying out, but she continues to request further proofs of his valiance. It is only in death that the two young people are finally united. Restored in 2K in 2019 in partnership with NYU and La Cinémathèque Afrique in collaboration with the SCAC of the French Embassy in New York and Razak Moustapha.

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  • Comedy-drama
  • 1998
  • Senegal
  • 45min

The Little Girl Who Sold the Sun

by Djibril Diop Mambéty

Dakar's boy newspaper-vendors are a familiar sight. But when Sili, a 12-year-old girl who walks on crutches and begs to support herself and her blind grandmother decides to try her hand at selling newspapers, she finds herself in a harsh, ruthless world. Yet as well as going through painful experiences, she makes friends with other humble folk. Restored in 2K in 2018 in partnership with Waka Films (Silvia Voser) and La Cinémathèque Afrique.

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  • Comedy
  • 1994
  • Senegal
  • 45min

Le Franc

by Djibril Diop Mambéty

Marigo is a musician. Ever since his landlady confiscated his instrument, a congoma, in lieu of his rent arrears, his dreams have revolved round getting it back. He manages to get hold of a national lottery ticket. To keep it safe until the draw, he glues it to his door and covers it with a poster of one of his childhood idols. On the night of the draw, Marigo cannot believe his luck: the winning number is the one on his ticket! He has visions of himself as a millionaire with a thousand congomas, an orchestra, a private aeroplane. The only snag is, the ticket is stuck to the door. Marigo prises the door from its hinges and carries it to the lottery office. Restored in 2K in 2018 by Eclair in partnership with Waka Films (Silvia Voser) and La Cinémathèque Afrique.

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  • Classics
  • 1955
  • Senegal
  • 21min

Afrique sur Seine

by Paulin Soumanou Vieyra, Mamadou Sarr and Jacques Melo Kane

When the colonial authorities refused him permission to film in Senegal, Viera decided to shoot his first short feature in Paris. The film depicts the lives of African students in Paris, their interactions with other people and the homesickness they feel living so far from their own countries.

Le retour d'un aventurier - Affiche
  • Comedy
  • 1966
  • Niger
  • 34min

Le Retour d'un aventurier

by Moustapha Alassane

Jimmy returns to his village in Niger from a trip to the USA, bearing gifts of cowboy outfits for his friends. Draping themselves in the myths of the American West, they adopt new names - Black Cooper, James Kelly, Casse-Tout and Reine Christine instead of Kali, Ibrahim and Boubakar - and start acting out their Wild West fantasy, laying waste to the neighbourhood, to the fury of the villagers. Restored in 2K in 2019 in partnership with the CNC in collaboration with Argos Films.

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  • Comedy
  • 1969
  • Niger
  • 45min

Cabascabo

by Oumarou Ganda

After serving in the French expeditionary corps in Indochina, an African rifleman is demobilized and returns home to Niger, wealthy and acclaimed by his friends. But he is too generous with his fortune, and soon finds himself deserted. A cult film with American film-makers and film studies lecturers, this is Oumarou Ganda's answer to Jean Rouch's film Moi, un noir (I, a Negro) in which he played himself in the role of a Senegalese rifleman who took part in the Indochinese war. Restored in 2K in 2019 in partnership with Orange Studio, La Cinémathèque Afrique and Argos Films.

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  • Classics
  • 1963
  • Senegal
  • 18min

Lamb - La lutte

by Paulin Vieyra

"Lamb" is the Wolof name of Senegalese traditional wrestling - a highly popular national sport reminiscent of Greco-Roman wrestling but with specific, very strict rules. The combatants train on the beach. Restored in 2K in 2018 in partnership with Orange Studio and La Cinémathèque Afrique in collaboration with PSV Films.

Caméra d'afrique - Affiche
  • Classics
  • 1983
  • 1h30

Twenty Years of African Cinema

by Férid Boughedir

Some 70 years after cinema was invented, and after more than half a century of colonial cinema in which Africa was used as an exotic backdrop but its inhabitants were often depicted as less than human and portrayed in ways that undermined their dignity, Africans in newly independent countries were finally able to operate the camera themselves. Filming in the face of insurmountable obstacles, lacking both equipment and infrastructures, taking whatever support they could get from within Africa or elsewhere, they strove to convey the many and varied realities of Africa as seen by the Africans who had so long been debarred from self-expression. Shot over a decade, Caméra d’Afrique relates the first 20 years of the new cohorts of creative film-makers that emerged in sub-Saharan Africa, documenting an unprecedented hunger for expression that remains unsated to this day.

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