Ok it seems to be the season for Mubi polls so I thought I would add one in myself. Throughout the year I have been adding loads and I mean loads of African films to the MUBI database!! I have created a mini African database the link is HERE.
Now what would I like you from you?
Well I would like a top ten list of your favourite African films to add to the project. Everbodies lists will be published alongside their name and avatar. The aim is not to whittle down or use points to list the ten favourite African films on this site. EVERYONE’S list will be printed and will become a source for other cinema lovers to discover films from their favourite users.
African films are hard to come by and I appreciate not everyone will have seen ten African films so any list between five and ten will be accepted. But IDEALLY ten films would be great!
If this is a success and there is some interest I suggest that we could take all the films voted and turn this into As I Was Browsing The Auteurs, Occasionally I Saw Brief Glimpses of Beauty: THE AFRICAN VERSION.
Anyway this is for a later date and can be discussed at a later time. RIGHT NOW i would just like ten African films.
The voting will last for a month and will close on the 15th November. (edited)
If anyone has any ideas on where this could go. Please discuss. I think there is a general interest in African film but due to availabilty issues and maybe some misconceptions a lot of what is on offer is ignored.
OK enough rambling! Here is my list: I included twenty films as it is my idea, there are too many good films to choose from and yes I am an only child;)
2.Man of Ashes (Bouzid)
3.No Tomorrow (Abouseif)
4.Africa I Will Fleece You (Teno)
6.Touki Bouki (Mambety)
7.Waiting For Happiness (Sissako)
8.Night of Counting Years (Abdel Salem)
9.A Thousand and One Nights (Bensaidi)
10.Kuxa Kanema: Birth of Cinema (Cardoso)
11.Farewell Johnny (Rautenbach)
12.The Heart’s Cry (Ouedraogo)
13.The Thief and the Dogs (El Sheikh)
17.The Bloodiest (Bekolo)
18.Cairo Station (Chahine)
19.Ylang Ylang Residence (Hachimiya)
20.Halfouine: Child of the Terraces (Boughedir)
Nice! I will definitely participate, of course. But I reckon you meant November 15th as the deadline? ;)
Another great poll which I will also definitely try to participate in. There are quite a few important films from Africa for me still to catch up with, so I’ll use this as an opportunity to watch at least some of these, your lists are certainly of great help.
I really haven’t seen enough African films to participate.
But if I can throw in a suggestion…what I would really love is a list of a handful of films (say 3-5) that all of you agree on. By “all of you,” I mean the three of you—Kuxa, Blue and Apu. If I asked you to choose 3-5 African films that you think I should see—i.e., these are picks by consensus—which ones would you choose (taking into account the availability of the film)?
I don’t mean to be pushy, but, FWIW, I’d love something like this.
Yep November 15th !! It is late here in the UK anyway that is my excuse;)
does South Africa count?
I will be in on this, probably within a week.
And I have to thank Kuxa, Blue, Apur, and others for opening my eyes to African cinema. I haven’t seen a lot of it, but I’ve loved a lot of what I have seen.
South Africa definitely counts! All areas and genres of Africa count for this poll. Only films made in South Africa count though. So a lot of say Richard Stanley’s filmography wouldn’t count.
I’m sure some tastes in films will overlap, and I am pretty sure films by Youssef Chahine, Ousmane Sembene, and Souleymane Cisse will come to the fore….. If you haven’t seen any African film it would be a great idea to start with these. I’m not sure whether Blue or Apursansar would agree?
If users would like to write some words on why they chose the films they did that would be great and will be published with the list. It may give others some inspiration and a greater idea on what first to watch.
the only Stanley that would make it for me would be Dust Devil and tht was made there.
I have plenty of other choices, will get back to you over the weekend
That’s great Den! I look forward to seeing some of your South African choices. A lot of S.A cinema is overlooked especially the aparthied era stuff for obvious reasons. But some of the films don’t deal with race or they actually confront racial issues head on such as Rautenbach, Uys and Katinka Heyns,
I second those three directors mentioned by Kuxa as good starting points and would add Mambéty as a fourth name for someone new to African cinema to begin with.
Does Jean Rouch count?
Yes certainly. I think it is hard to draw up exact rules for this type of exercise. I definitely view his films as “African” but made by a European director as compared to Denis’s Chocolat, Zulu, The African Queen or Nowhere In Africa. I guess this is subjective though and brings up an interesting debate about what is “African” as so much of Africa’s history has been dictated by colonialism. Anyhow I digress… Yes I will leave it up to the voter to decide what they view as “African”. Some comments on why the film deserves a place on your list would be great though if the film is in any way debatable.
1. City of Contrasts – Mambety
2. Dry Season – Haroun
3. Waiting for Happiness – Sissako
4. Touki Bouki – Mambety
5. Harvest: 3000 Years – Gerima
6. Bamako – Sissako
7. Yeelen – Cissé
8. Black Girl – Sembene
9. The Little Girl Who Sold the Sun – Mambety
10. Cairo Station – Chahine
R. that is a great list!! Great to see Yeleen, Touki Bouki and Black Girl make your top ten. Also great to see Waiting For Happiness at no.3. This is a film I rediscovered recently. I am strangely reminded of Fellini’s Amarcord and even though stylistically they are poles apart they both revel in storytelling, in short intricate stories perfect in shape and form.
Harvest 3,000 years is a film I must watch soon. It has been on my list to see for a while now and I guess I have put it off due to watching Gerima’s Sankofa which really didn’t impress me.
A film that will be sure to get a few mentions will be The Little Girl Who Sold the Sun. I have to say this film leaves me cold. I am far more impressed with Mambety’s edgier political films such as Toui Bouki and Hyenas.
A list based on films in my DVD collection….includes many international co-productions…
Inch’ Allah Dimanche (2001, Benguigui)
The Battle of Algiers (1966, Pontecorvo)
Z (1969, Costa-Gavras)
The Stranger (1967, Visconti)
Rashida (2002, Bachir)
The Silences of the Palace (1994, Tlatli)
Le Fil (2009, Ben Attia)
Ali Zaoua, Prince de la Rue (2000, Ayouch)
Satin Rouge (2002, Amari)
Le Grande Voyage (2004, Ferroukhi)
Ali Zaoua, Prince de la Rue (2000, Ayouch)
Raja (2003, Doillon)
Tsotsi (2005, Hood)
Yesterday (2004, Roodt)
District 9 (2009, Blomkamp)
Moolaade (2004, Sembene)
Touki Bouki (1973, Mambety)
Faat Kine (2001, Sembene)
Black Girl (1966, Sembene)
Hyenas (1992, Mambety)
The Yacoubian Building (2006, Hamed)
Cairo Time (2009, Nadda)
The Iron Gate – Bab el Hadid(1958, Chahine)
Yelen (1987, Cisse)
Genesis (1999, Sissoko)
Guimba (1995, Sissoko)
Tilai (1990, Ouedraogo)
Yelen (1987, Cisse)
Yaaba (1989, Ouedraogo)
Guimba (1995, Sissoko)
Wend Kuuni (1983, Kabore)
Black and White in Color (1976, Annaud)
Faces of Women (1987, Ecare)
Chocolat (1988, Denis)
La Vie est Belle (1987, Lamy, Ngangura)
Daresalam (2001, Coelo)
I haven’t seen many African films unfortunately, but the one’s I have seen I feel are all very good.
01 The Wind
02 Black Girl
03 Touki Bouki
04 The Silences of the Palace
05 Reassemblage (the MUBI profile page says that it belongs to the United States, but it was shot in Senegal I believe)
06 The Battle of Algiers
By the way Kuxa Kanema, it goes without saying (but I’ll say it anyway) that all of your tremendous work on the Africa Project, including those many hundreds of submissions to the MUBI database, is very much appreciated!!! I hope I can get around to watching more African films soon.
This is great, some kind of dream! I will definitely participate.
Hope you have deserved success in your new venture.
Honestly, I haven’t seen virtually ANY African films…I’m kind of embarassed but I feel it is necessary to admit it. I do have Harvest: 3000 Years in a queue here somewhere to watch eventually…
Wanderers of the Desert
The Little Girl Who Sold the Sun
Night of Counting the Years
Adrift on the Nile
Guimba the Tyrant
Waiting for Happiness
Predictable perhaps, but availability has hampered my options I fear. Nonetheless, I fully support Kuxa’s efforts here as well as all the great work done in adding to the database and providing lists of important films.
Thanks Greg and Mischa for your lists!
Adrift On the Nile is another film I have wanted to see for a while now. Egyptian cinema has some great riches and so many films are available on Smz or YT. The only problem being the lack of subs for nearly everything.
This is one sorely needed- sadly neglected continent, and no doubt so many hidden treasures. Back in a jiffy
Voici les résultats du jury Gallois:
2. Silences of the Palace (Tlatli)
3.Waiting for Happiness (Sissako)
4.The Nightingale’s Prayer (Barakat)
5.Wanderers of the Desert (Khemir)
8.Touki Bouki (Mambety)
9.Bab Aziz: the Prince that Contemplated his Soul (Khemir)
@Kuxa; are Thousand and One Nights and Dilemma on mubi? I’ve found Thousand Months by Bensaidi
one director i want to get to know is Med Hondo, e.g Sarraounia, Soleil O
Luckily Netflix had a fairly good Egyptian film selection, well, relatively speaking anyway, so I could see Adrift on the Nile and some other older Egyptian films. Unfortunately I had to put my Netflix account on hold so my further exploration of that era also had to be waylaid. Off topic, anyone with a Netflix account should also be taking advantage of their Mexican film selection as well, as there is plenty of good stuff to see from Mexico’s “golden era” available.
@ Kenji; Dilemma is not yet on MUBI but I will add the title soon. The film reminds me of Cassavettes’ Shadows but set in apartheid South Africa. There os a cool jazz theme throughout and some marvellous black and white camera work. A similar film is Lionel Rogosin’s Come Back Africa technically American, but for these purposes I would say it is very much an African film. I hope it will make a least one person’s list.
Thousand and One Nights is a poetic humourous look at Moroccan culture and values. It is beautiful to watch and often very funny. It is available on dvd in the UK and is well worth a look. I haven’t seen any Med Hondo yet but I know Soleil O is on YT and Sarraounia is on my hardrive. I do plan to upload quite a few films in the coming months if anyone has some specific choices I can oblige. I have over 100 films on my hardrive from Africa with some great diversity.
This is an exceptionally haphazard list, but . . .
Yeelen (Souleymane Cissé)Xala (Ousmane Sembène)Wanderers of the Desert (Nacer Khemir)Touki Bouki (Djibril Diop Mambéty)Waiting for Happiness (Abderrahmane Sissako)Black Girl (Ousmane Sembène)Soleil O (Med Hondo)Buud Yam (Gaston Kaboré)Kaddu Beykat (Safi Faye)Muna Moto (Jean Piere Dikongue-Pipa)
Yeah, mine is fairly ignorant too (mostly a result of one great African film series I attended some years ago).
Moi, un noir (Jean Rouch)
Jaguar (Jean Rouch)
Xala (Ousmane Sembène)
Asfour Stah (Férid Boughedir)
The Silences of the Palace (Moufida Tlatli)
Black Girl (Ousmane Sembène)
Kaddu Beykat (Safi Faye)
Hyènes (Djibril Diop Mambéty)
Le Wazzou polygame (Oumarou Ganda)
A Kalahari Family (John Marshall)
It makes me very happy that nobody has picked The Gods Must Be Crazy yet.
Ok, Since I’m African & Egyptian :) Here my 20 Favs
01. Land of Fear (1999, Abdel Sayed)
02. Night of Counting Years (1969, Abdel Salem)
03. Kit Kat (1991, Abdel Sayed)
04. Date Wine (1998, El-Kashef)
05. A citizen & A detective & A thief (2001, Abdel Sayed)
06. Touki Bouki (1973, Mambety)
07. Harvest: 3000 Years (1976, Gerima)
08. Black Girl (1966, Sembene)
09. The Search of Sayed Marzouk (1990, Abdel Sayed) Not on MUBI
10. Yeelen (1987, Cissé)
11. Messages from the Sea (2010, Abdel Sayed)
12. Fallen Angels Paradise (Fawzi, 2000)
13. The Return of The Prodigal son (1976, Chahine)
14. The Heart’s Cry (Ouedraogo)
15. Chronicle of the Years of Fire (1975, Lakhdar-Hamina)
16. Alexandria… Why? (Chahine, 1979)
17. Dreams of Hind and Kamilia (1989, Khan)
18. The Silences of the Palace (1994, Tlatli)
19. Man of Ashes (1986, Bouzid)
20. Waiting for Happiness (2002, Sissako)