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Debut film by Claire Denis, based on her own childhood, a drama about the relationship between the local black population and the white, French coloniser in Cameroon.

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Deze voorstelling maakt deel uit van Rialto Filmclub met als gastspreker deze maand Ernst-Jan Pfauth.


Seven-year-old France leads a nice and orderly existence in Cameroon, where her often absent father is district governor. Her beautiful mother Aimée hangs around listlessly in the colonial villa, where only her black servant Potée provides some distraction. When a plane makes an emergency landing nearby, the stranded passengers find shelter in the villa. Their arrival, and especially that of Luc Segalen, puts relations on edge, as it is considered inappropriate for Aimée and France to get too close to the invisible but never-to-be-passed divide between the local black population and the white coloniser. After all, the French are superior, in their own opinion.

Director Claire Denis drew on her own childhood, which she spent largely in West Africa, for this debut film. All the stylistic features that make her later films so special are already present in this debut: beautifully framed images, few dialogues and a non-linear narrative. With Giulia Boschi and Isaach De Bankolé, among others.