On the last day of Encounter 1, we are screening Ousmane Sembène’s first feature film, La Noire de … (1966). Sembène is referred to as the ‘father of African cinema’ and La Noire de ... is considered the first Sub-Saharan film by an African director to receive international recognition. It explores the complex dynamics of the immediate post-colonial period.
La Noire de ... is the story of a young black Senegalese woman, Diouana (Mbissine Thérèse Diop), brought to Antibes by a French couple. Under the mistaken assumption that she has been employed as a governess for the couple's children, Diouana quickly learns that she is little more than a servant. When they mistreat her, she is ready for even the most extreme means of escape.
Dir. Ousmane Sembène | 65min | Rated M16
His images have the cool fury of an indictment; his ironic views of the French landscape and his shrewd New Wave citations suggest that beneath the natural and cultural charms of France lurks bilious racism linked to colonialism.
—Richard Brody, The New Yorker