Le courage des autres (1982)

Run Time - 92 min.  |   Countries - Upper Volta  |  
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This anti-slavery docudrama by Christian Richard, a Frenchman teaching film in the capital of Burkina Faso (Upper Volta at this time), is divided into a first half, when villagers are slowly captured by slave traders and forced on a long and silent march to presumed deportation, followed by an action half, when a mysterious stranger arrives on the scene and insinuates himself into the group of slaves. The women are sold off to a tribal leader, and the stranger -- by means magical or otherwise -- starts to eliminate the slave traders, one by one. With their numbers steadily decreasing, the slavers have less authority over their captives -- and the captives, in turn, are more inspired by the new possibility of gaining freedom. Although director Richard does not orchestrate the action scenes as well as he captures the landscape and people during the slow march, the film is still well-conceived and the camerawork is excellent.