Image of movie Watani, un monde sans mal
Monografie: Med Hondo

Watani, un monde sans mal

Med Hondo
France, Mauritania 1998
103 min

Shot in black and white on a shoestring budget in a minimalist mode and with winks toward silent cinema and hip hop culture, WATANI was inspired by news of the daily humiliation of migrants and a general context of fear.
The film contrasts the lives of two characters who lose their job the same day: Patrick Clement, a married bank clerk with two daughters and a wife now in a wheelchair following a terrorist attack, and Mamadou Sylla, an African immigrant and a father of two, who is a garbage collector. While the latter seeks employment in vain, the former drifts slowly into the hands of extremist right wing groups who attack and kill black and Arab migrants in the dark of the night. Symbolically rich, the film has important resonances with the longer history of France’s relationship to its former colonies, namely the famous October 17, 1961 massacre of Algerian migrants in Paris directed by the-then police chief himself in reprisal against the FLN’s independence struggle.
In this film, Med Hondo de-emphasizes speech and stresses the cine-discursive potential of the articulation of sound and image tracks, making this a genuine montage film and leaving it up to the spectator to make the necessary connections.

  • Patrick Poivey
  • Coumba Awa Tall
  • Mboup Massyla
  • Anne Jolivet
  • James Campbell
  • Olivier Drouot
  • Laure Budin
  • Raoul Barboza
  • Ahmed Daye
  • Passi
  • Arsenik
  • Jacques Ivan Duchesne
  • Denis Moutereau
  • Maratier
MH Films
35 mm
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