Tales of the Night weaves together six exotic fables each unfolding in a unique locale, from Tibet, to medieval Europe, to the Land of the Dead. From the imagination of internationally renowned animator Michel Ocelot.
Angel is a selfish, abusive, morally bankrupt man who hangs out as his local bar, berating the other patrons. One day, Angel mysteriously wakes up with a pair of wings on his back. The ... See full summary »
Chico is a young piano player with big dreams. Rita is a beautiful singer with an extraordinary voice. Music and romantic desire unites them, but their journey - in the tradition of the Latin ballad, the bolero - brings heartache and torment.
12 year-old Adama lives in a remote village in West Africa, sheltered by the Cliffs. Out, beyond, lies "the land of breaths", the kingdom of wicked spirits hungry for war. When Samba, his ... See full summary »
A chronicle of John Lennon's first years, focused mainly in his adolescence and his relationship with his stern aunt Mimi, who raised him, and his absentee mother Julia, who re-entered his life at a crucial moment in his young life.
Kristin Scott Thomas,
Adapted by the authors, Marguerite Abouet and Clément Oubrerie, from their comic book "Aya de Yopougon", the film of the same name left me with mixed feelings. I was interested throughout but, as the story unfurled, I realized I had to fight yawns. Strange as it may seem, the paradox is easily explained: the substance is rich and challenging whereas the form is dull and unimaginative. Worst of all, "Aya de Yopugon" is talky, talky, talky. As a result, boredom constantly threatens to win the game. Fortunately, the worth of the story ends up saving the day. Well, let's stay positive and concentrate on the qualities of the film. The time, place and characters (all stemming from Marguerite Abouet's experiences) attract the viewer's attention. Yopougon (a poor area of Abidjan, Ivory Coast), a seldom seen location, and the time (the late 1970s, during president Houphouët-Boigny's tenure), a rarely described period, are well documented, colorful as well as informative. Abouet knows what she is talking about and it shows. Even better, the cartoonist, through the characters she has created (Aya, a serious- minded high school student, and her two fickle friends Bintou and Adjoua), succeeds in moving from the general to the particular, the portrait of the particular district of Yopougon being a (possible) extrapolation of the whole African continent, at least as it was three decades ago. And a sour portrait for that matter. If we take Yopougon as a scale model of African society, we find that it is made of machos, womanizers, cheaters, nouveaux riches, lazybones on the male side and, on the female one, man hunters. Of course this statement needs be nuanced, but some of the evils that have been plaguing Africa are openly - and quite rightly - denounced here. Which is confirmed in the - bitter - ending : will a talented girl like Aya really be able to become a doctor as she dreamed she would ? Nothing is less certain and... less depressing. The biting social commentary is what makes "Aya de Yopougon" an ultimately watchable adult cartoon. Too bad its dull style prevents it from being the masterpiece it could have been, in the league of "Waltz with Bashir" or "Approved for Adoption". But, in the end, even though you will not have had the time of your life, you will not have wasted your time, which is not that bad after all.
3 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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