GREAT AFRICAN FILMS - VOL 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
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.”
"[ In Great African Film - Vol 1] Drissa Toure’s Haramuya (1995) is a sprawling 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 cq, the capital of Burkina Faso. In a season of economic uncertainty due to the devaluation of the currency, one of the cleric Fousseini’s sons works as a projectionist in a movie theater, and — over the protestations of his secular wife — turns over his earnings to the patriarch. The other son is a feckless sort who wanders the city and its surrounding shantytowns trying to find a girlfriend.
While there’s a certain discursive charm to Haramuya, the storytelling is a little loose and it’s probably better received as a kind of shaggy dog story that opens a window on a very different Africa than most of us are used to seeing. Ouagadougou is an earth-toned city of scooters and dirt streets, of corrugated tin and con artists. Toure is more painter than storyteller — Haramuya is worth seeing if only for the quality of his light.
But the real wonder of the set is Abbdoulaye Ascofare’s Faraw! Mother of the Dunes (1997), from Mali. With her husband, a former political prisoner, bedridden and mentally devastated, and her credit exhausted, a mother of three struggles to support her family while saving her daughter from becoming the concubine-maid of a French colonialist.
Both Faraw and Haramuya offer the rare experience of almost complete dislocation in the movie; I had no idea where either of them were leading until the last frame. And while Faraw is the more potent film — it has the timelessness of Greek myth — both provide haunting images, visions of a world that otherwise might never have crossed our minds."
Philip Martin - ARKANSAS DEMOCRAT-GAZETTE - moviestyle section
An ArtMattan Films Release
Amazon.com: Great African Films, Providing African Americans & people of color with a trading network for buying DVDs on-line. ,Vol. 1: Haramuya and Faraw: Mother of the Dunes: Great African Films: Movies & TV
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