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Closer Looks: Touki Bouki

October 12, 2023 @ 6:00 pm

Showing in the CCA Cinema

(Senegal, 1973) | Oct. 12, 2023 | Selected by Justin Clifford Rhody

With a stunning mix of the surreal and the naturalistic, Djibril Diop Mambéty paints a fractured portrait of the disenchantment of postindependence Senegal in the early 1970s. In this picaresque fantasy-drama, the disaffected young lovers Anta and Mory, fed up with Dakar, long to escape to the glamour and comforts they imagine France has to offer, but their plan is confounded by obstacles both practical and mystical.

Touki Bouki (which means “Journey of the Hyena” in the Wolof language of Senegal) has an avant-garde sensibility characterized by vivid imagery, bleak humor, unconventional editing, and jagged soundscapes. Made on a $30,000 budget from Mambety’s own autobiographical script, Touki Bouki shows the influence of the French New Wave, yet is completely original. The film is regarded as one of the first examples of “hybridization,” the combination of Western cinema technique with African storytelling traditions, and it demonstrates Mambéty’s commitment to telling African stories in new ways. The alternately manic and meditative Touki Bouki is widely considered one of the most important African films ever made.

In 2008 the film was digitally restored from the original 35mm camera and sound negatives in partnership between Martin Scorsese’s World Cinema Project, Cineteca di Bologna/L’Immagine Ritrovata laboratory and the family of Djibril Diop Mambéty. The restoration was funded by Armani, Cartier, Qatar Airways, and Qatar Museum Authority.

Closer Looks is an in-depth cinema series curated by the award-winning filmmaker and editor Paul Barnes, film critic and writer David N. Meyer, and filmmaker, musician and co-founder of No Name Cinema, Justin Clifford Rhody. The series showcases a broad range of eras, regions, and subjects, all unified by their integral contribution to the history of cinema as an art form. Each film screening is preceded by an in-depth overview by the presenter and is followed by an open audience conversation to contextualize and explore the importance of the evening’s film.

$13

Note: Tickets are only $3.00 for EBT cardholders

1050 Old Pecos Trail
Santa Fe, NM 87505 United States
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(505) 982-1338
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