By Beatriz Miranda, Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – This month, Caixa Cultural, in Centro, promotes “Grandes Clássicos do Cinema Africano” (Great Classics from the African Cinema), a film festival dedicated to the most relevant audiovisual productions from the African continent. From November 14th to November 26th, the event screens 21 movies, mostly from the 1960s and 1970s.

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Directed by the “Father of the African Cinema” Ousmane Sembene, Xala (1975) satirizes the socio-political scenario of post-colonial Senegal, photo internet recreation.

Aimed at presenting the plurality of realities, aesthetics and discourses of the African filmmakers, the event displays short, medium and feature-length films that played a central role in the cultural scene of some African countries.

All the participating films were selected according to its historical relevance for its respective countries. Besides classics from the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, the festival also brings a documentary from 2009 and a feature-length fiction from 2009.

What’s more, most of the films haven’t been screened in Carioca movie theaters before, which makes the event a great opportunity to learn more about Africa’s independent cinematography.

Among the rare films being displayed, Afrique 50 (Africa 50, 1950) is worth to watch this Saturday, November 25th, at 3PM. Prohibited during decades, this strong documentary produced by French filmmaker René Vautie reflects on the effects of colonization in West Africa.

Aimed at portraying the clashes between traditional and post-colonial Senegal with sarcasm, “Xala” (1975), directed by renowned Senegalese filmmaker Ousmane Sembene, the “Father of the African Cinema”, is one of the most emblematic films from the continent’s post-independence period. “Xala” will be exhibited on Friday, November 24th, at 6:30PM.

“During the colonial period, black Africans were prohibited to make movies. Thus, they were represented through the stereotypes produced by the white colonizers. This festival’s participating films reflect the political context when they were produced and reflect on the challenges the post-colonial African societies faced”, says Tiago Gomes, the event’s curator.

Also being displayed on Saturday, November 25th, will be the short “Lamb” (1963), run by Beninese director Paulin Soumanou Vieyra, which presents a Senegalese type of martial art.

On Sunday, November 26th, a session dedicated to Moustapha Alassane, filmmaker from Niger, will close the festival. Starting at 3PM, the session includes works like “Bon voyage, Sim” (Have a nice trip, Sim, 1966), “Samba, le grand” (Samba, the great, 1977) and “Aouré” (1962)

What: Mostra Grandes Clássicos do Cinema Africano (Great Classics from the African Cinema Exhibit)
When: November 14th – November 26th – see event for time details.
Where: Caixa Cultural do Rio de Janeiro – Avenida Almirante Barroso, 25 – Centro – Tel: (21) 3980-3815
Entrance: R$2 – R$4

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