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African Film Festival: “Le ballon d’or (The Golden Ball)” and “Be Kunko (Everybody’s Problem)”

May 11, 2006 @ 7:00 pm 9:00 pm EDT

The Golden Ball (Le ballon d’or) directed by Cheik Doukouré, Guinea/France, 1992, 90 minutes. Cheik Doukouré’s second feature celebrates the powerful dream of becoming an African soccer star, a dream that is pursued by kids in innumerable small villages who play in the dust with bare feet and footballs made of rags. A thoroughly engaging adventure story, Le ballon follows Bandian, a boy-wonder on the soccer field, from his village in the bush through a series of hilarious and not so funny contretemps to superstardom in France. He’s assisted on his way by his hometown witch doctor; the young French doctor (Agnés Soral) who gifts him with a real football — the “golden” ball of the film’s title, a dwarf (Aboubacar Koita) who offers him a brother’s love, soccer star Karim (played by Salif Keita), and a canny businessman with an eye for the main chance. Be Kunko (Everybody’s Problem) directed by Cheick Fantamady Camara, Guinea, 2004, 30 minutes. Bè Kunko depicts the spiral of violence that a group of teenagers fall into as they struggle to survive day-to-day in a Guinean refugee camp in the capital of Conakry. Little by little, we discover the teenagers’ daily lives. John and Tom go from burglary to armed robbery, whilst Satou and Dady end up in prostitution. As time goes by, the gap widens between Tom, who revels in an extreme violence, and John, who is violent because that’s the only way to survive, but who nonetheless struggles to build himself a “normal” life again. Despite the love and attention she showers on them, seventy-year-old Mémé, their grandmother, who is a refugee too, can do nothing to save John, Tom, Satou and Dady from this infernal spiral. Co-Sponsored with the Art Department of RPI and iEAR Presents!

3361 6th Ave
Troy, 12180 United States
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