6.8/10
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9 user 7 critic

The Mad Masters (1955)

Les maîtres fous (original title)
A documentary short depicting a Hauka ceremony where young workers are possessed by British colonial officers.

Director:

Jean Rouch

Star:

Jean Rouch
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Cast

Credited cast:
Jean Rouch ... Narrator (voice)
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Storyline

In one of the first mockumentaries ever created, director Jean Rouch takes his viewers to the city of Accra (West Africa) where he follows the Hauka movement and their religious and ritual proceedings which works as an effective way to challenge and resist the British colonialism of the period. The indigenous people's rituals includes strange and frantic dances, chanting, sacrifices and some mockery of the Europeans living there. Written by Rodrigo Amaro

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was shot in 1953, edited in 1955, and finally shown in 1957. See more »

Quotes

Narrator: Madame LeCortereau, the "doctor's wife," is a rather effeminate boy who uses a lot of hair Vaseline.
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Connections

Featured in I Saw Ben Barka Get Killed (2005) See more »

User Reviews

 
a strange and often disturbing documentary short
7 April 2017 | by framptonhollisSee all my reviews

Saliva bursts from their shuddering mouths, forming bubbly clouds of white. Obviously, images such as these are quite shocking and unpleasant, but one must get used to them before delving into Jean Roach's twisted short film "The Mad Masters"

"The Mad Masters" is a film as weird and fascinating as its subject, a religious sect in West Africa. Roach's lens follows their often uncomfortable rituals, as they are "possessed" by spirits and even manage to drink blood. Throughout the film, many unforgettable images are exposed to the viewer. Whether these people are genuinely being possessed by spirits or not, there is no denying that their movements, actions, and noises whilst in such a state are quite petrifying. Their dances of painful possession shall forever remain in my cinematic memory as some of the strangest and most unbelievable content I have witnessed in a documentary film.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

17 June 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A bolond urak See more »

Filming Locations:

Accra, Ghana

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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