Cycles

20 films for 2020 - Cinémathèque Afrique

Cycle Cinémathèque Afrique

16 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
  • 1983
  • Burkina Faso
  • 11min
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.

  • Adventure, Young audience
  • 1977
  • Niger
  • 14min
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.

  • Comedy-drama
  • 1998
  • Senegal
  • 45min
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.

  • Comedy
  • 1994
  • Senegal
  • 45min
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.

  • Classics
  • 1955
  • Senegal
  • 21min
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.

  • Comedy, Classics
  • 1966
  • Niger
  • 34min
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 neighborhood, to the fury of the villagers. Restored in 2K in 2019 in partnership with the CNC in collaboration with Argos Films.

  • Comedy
  • 1969
  • Niger
  • 45min
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.

  • Classics
  • 1963
  • Senegal
  • 18min
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.

  • Classics
  • 1983
  • 1h30
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.

  • Drama
  • 1966
  • Republic of the Congo
  • 28min
by Luc Siassia and Sébastien Kamba

Two young people love each other and want to get married, but a sorcerer advises the groom to test the feelings of his bride.

  • Drama
  • 1964
  • Ivory Coast
  • 32min
by Bassori Timite

Two young lovers meet by a lagoon and spend the night together. In the morning the girl has mysteriously disappeared.

  • Comedy-drama
  • 1996
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • 40min
by Balufu Bakupa-Kanyinda

To fill a sleepless night, the President-for-life-founder, first citizen of "his" country, plays checkers with the man in the street known as champion in every category... And that night he becomes the "Father of the Nation"...

  • Comedy, Classics
  • 1988
  • Ivory Coast
  • 1h31
by Henri Duparc

Demi-dieu (Demigod) is a wealthy farmer and village head with five wives. When he decides to marry a sixth, young Binta, to have one for each day of the week (apart from Sunday, the day of rest), his five wives become discontent. Binta, a modern, self-confident woman, doesn't want to be kept in line. Soon there is conflict with her husband as well as with the other five wives, creating comic relief.

  • Comedy-drama
  • 1992
  • Burkina Faso
  • 1h38
by Pierre Yameogo

Offspring of an African priest and a mother who cannot reveal the truth of his paternity, Wendemi is abandonned by his mother, who then runs away. As an adult, Wendemi's lack of "identity" causes him to be rejected by a society that refuses to "recognize" him. So Wendemi sets out in search of a name and a family. He at last comes to the capital, Ouagadougou, where he thinks he'll find his mother at last. Instead he runs into the "Herder", a childhood friend who has become the "man's son", a sort of pimp who finds under-aged girls for wealthy clients...

  • Adventure, Comedy, Musical comedy
  • 1987
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Belgium
  • 1h23
by Mweze Ngangura and Benoit Lamy

Kourou, a young villager, decides to conquer Kinshasa, the capital. But it is easier said than done. In the big city, Kourou finds nothing but odd jobs and throws his life away with prostitutes. One day he is even fired for stealing. The situation seems hopeless but the worm turns the moment when, after entering a bar, Kourou takes a mike in his hands and starts singing.

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