Politically charged yet serenely told historical drama about the 1944 Thiaroye massacre. Sembène's highly controlled mood and camerawork render the camp a rich color palette of commingling ideologies, power-interests, profit motives, survival struggles, colonial rule, indignation, rebellion and bloodshed. Sharp political cinema that culminates in the vision of Africa's hope to 'walk upright'. Powerful and moving!
Certainly not his best work, definitely will drag you along (is essentially two films, each complete with an entire story arc), but in the end you'll come away with something you've probably never known about. More than this, viewing for the mute character will give you a lesson in writing dimensional characters without dialogue. A must see.