Thursday, May 28, 2015


Two women directors, Claire Denis and Caroline Link. Two stories set in colonial Africa. Two movies seen from the point of view of a young white girl. Two stories with a black servant in a white household in the focus. Two stories looking at the past, trying to decode it. Yet, so different are the two films! Link’s Nowhere in Africa is, at the heart of it, is a breathtaking romantic saga of lost childhood. It is justifiably so, hence the Oscar for Best Foreign Language film. But, Denis’s Chocolat is a strange thing, of ethereal beauty yet ruthlessly political, acutely aware of the racial past and white men’s connect with the black skin. Though I love ‘Nowhere in Africa’, I have a special admiration for ‘Chocolat’, because of how the film looks, unflinchingly at the issue.

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