Jody Aloysius Crackstar (ericpoptone) wrote in world_cinema,
Jody Aloysius Crackstar
ericpoptone
world_cinema

Xala



For those that aren't familiar with Ousmane Sembene, he is the godfather of African Cinema. A novelist who wished to reach larger audiences than he could with books can who studied film in the Soviet Union.

Xala concerns a man named El Hadji who helps end colonialism and then usher in neo-colonialism with its attendant corruption. He decides to take a third wife with the money he's funneled from social programs and is cursed with impotence on his wedding night. As with many African films, the hypocrisy of those who retain African customs and western customs wherever it suits their selfishness.

El Hadji goes to marabouts and colleagues hoping to restore his virility while everything in his life falls apart around him while his wives and a daughter conspire against him. A lot of comical and sad twists and turns occur before ultimately wrapping up in an arresting ending that I didn't see coming.

Xala, along with Mandabi, have just been released on DVD and are the first two Ousamne Sembene films to be available in the US.
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