Wednesday, February 5, 2014
Alain Gomis (Senegal, 2012)
Guetty Felin is an independent filmmaker, producer, and distributor
“Spiritual, soulful and captivating.”—Hollywood Reporter
(Aujourd'hui/Today). American musician/slam poet Saul Williams stars in this dreamlike fable of one man’s last day on earth, as prescribed by fate. Awaking alone, Satché (Williams) leaves his room to discover most of his family, friends, and neighborhood elders gathered outside, all echoing a strange message: you have been chosen to die, and today is your last day on earth. Stunned and uncertain, he spends his time walking the streets, meeting friends and lovers, walking by street riots, practicing his death ceremony, bonding with his children and wife. Director Alain Gomis paces each scene like an inescapable dream, fueled by existential nightmares part Sartre or Ionesco, yet also strangely comforting: it’s death as a tropical breeze, or a slow downbeat song. “I want to create suspense with simple moments,” he notes, “to open the time as in a magical moment.” “A metaphysical film, of rare sensorial power” (Le monde), Tey is one of the most stunning African films of the year.
• Written by Gomis, Djolof Mbengue. Photographed by Crystel Fournier. With Saul Williams, Djolof Mbengue, Aïssa Maïga, Anisia Uzeyman. (89 mins, In French, Wolof, and Mandinka with English subtitles, Color, DCP, From BelleMoon Productions)