Login

Abouna Review

Image for Abouna

A teenager and his asthmatic eight year-old brother, try to track down the father who recently decamped to Morocco.

★★★★★

A poster advertising Idrissa Ouedraogo's film Yaaba firmly roots this rites-of-passage picture in the neo-realist tradition established during the brief flourishing of sub-Saharan cinema in the late 1980s.While that title meant "grandmother", this one translates as "our father" and explores the relationship between parents and children, the individual and the community, in a society where so many men are forced to work abroad.

Set in N'djamena on the Chad-Cameroon border, the action opens with teenager Ahidjo Mahamat Moussa and his asthmatic eight year-old brother, Hamza Moctar Aguid, trying to track down the father who recently decamped to Morocco. Their efforts ultimately land them in a strict Koranic school, where tragedy strikes.

Mahamat-Saleh Haroun blends wry humour and youthful optimism to make this a provocative and uplifting experience.