That’s it! The 2nd edition of Gorée cinema festival opened on Saturday on the memory island. For this year, the world premiere of the director Moustapha Seck was on the bill. Meanwhile, Le troisième prophète (The Third Prophet) is a documentary that recalls the work of Djibril Diop Mambéty and Ousmane Sembène and was a reality check on the Senegalese cinema scene.
“Goree cinema begins to impose itself” .The statement was made by the director of cinematography, Hugues Diaz, last Saturday, at the screening of the opening film of the 2nd edition of this festival. On the bill, the world premiere of En attendant le troisième prophète (Waiting for the third prophet), a documentary film of about thirty minutes directed by Moustapha Seck which recalls the work of Sembene and Djibril Diop Mambéty.
Between admiration or inordinate enjoyment of Moussa Sene Absa on the work Mambéty Djibril Diop and Ousmane Sembène, the more or less objective analysis of the critics Baba Diop and Khalifa Touré and the sharpened eye of the singer Wasiz Diop, the director recalls the ideology of these two icons of the Senegalese 7th art, before making the observation on the state of Senegalese cinema. Is it enough to have prolific statistics on the output of films to proclaim a Senegalese cinema? Although the question remains, Moustapha Seck notes that the legacy of these men begin to lose the need to remember the fight of Sembene and Mambéty, waiting for the third prophet who will restore the Senegalese cinema to its former glory.
The director of this documentary does not just limit himself to making a statement, he gave the floor to the new generation to explain and outline the perspectives with a view to asserting a Senegalese cinema, both in form and in substance. Thus, we retain from the film the notion that Senegal already has a loft of knowledge with the work of Sembene and Djibril Diop Mambéty, it only remains to transmit this knowledge to the new generation, by creating a Film School. This would be a step towards creating a cinematic environment conducive to industrialisation of the sector.
Small but satisfied public
The feet in water, sitting in small numbers according to affinities, the public was able, through quotations from these two masters punctuated by illumination by industry players, dive back into the golden age of Senegalese cinema.
This festival is a meeting place for lovers of 7th art of all ages. To promote African cinema in general and the Senegalese by incorporating local tourism into it seems to be the wish of the festival organisers.
Programming in 3 cycles
After 8 films were screened, 3 concerts and 6 disso, (workshop discussion on the cinema) last year, the Goree film festival reopened this year. For this 2nd edition, the mission remains the promotion of African cinema in general, and particularly that of Senegal in “addressing social issues through films that are in tune with the times, which do not necessarily have a great voice on account of not being very well known,” says Yanis Gaye, the editorial director of the festival. Thus, this 2nd edition will be divided into three cycles. The first aims to be a mirror for the promotion of African film model. This is what led to the screening of the world premiere of the film Waiting for the 3rd prophet by Moustapha Seck.
This documentary wants to start a debate on an African model at a time when Western blockbusters have come to condition the film market. The second cycle, which will begin next week, will discuss three things: women, revolution and social struggle. For this purpose, a double screening of two documentaries by two women on the role of music in the social struggle. Tunisia clash follows the journey of young rappers during the Arab Spring while Rama Thiaw, the Senegalese filmmaker, will screen her eyewitness film on the creation of Y’en a marre by rappers of the Keur gui group. In Yanis Gaye’s opinion, it is such and different confrontation of these complementary visions which is being sought.
The festival’s 3rd component is the animation and entertainment. We want to show that on Gorée we can make living things. The 3rd will be a concert of a Senegalese artist and a movie. It is reported that the presence of a very popular rapper is in line to bescheduled for the end of the concert.
Even if the ambition of the organisers of the festival which aims to be long-lasting is to promote the Senegalese cinema while giving a particular interest to the tourism, the support is wished. This, Yanis Gaye explained by the fact that that this festival has to prove even if the first edition sparked an enthusiasm. “We have the supports that are not up to what we would like to receive. The first year we had to come forward and prove ourselves. Institutions will be more likely to be charmed if they see the excitement that the festival creates the quality we offer,” declared the editorial director of the festival.