french films > Waiting for Happiness

Waiting for Happiness

Waiting for Happiness

Review score: * * * * *

cast: Khatra Ould Abder Kader, Maata Ould Mohamed Abeid

year: 2002

colour: no

certificate: U

director: Abderrahmane Sissako

runtime: 95

In Nouadhibou, a lonely and isolated village sandwiched between the Atlantic Ocean and the Sahara Desert in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, Abdullah (Mohamed Mahmoud Ould Mohamed), a seventeen-year old boy, arrives from Mali to visit his mother before leaving for Europe. Unable to speak the local Hassanya language and dressed only in Western clothes, he is a stranger in a strange land. The film is Waiting for Happiness, in which Mauritanian director Aderrahmane Sissako portrays the conflict between Western modernization and local African traditions, basing the story on his own experience of exile and return. It won the International Film Critics award for best film in the Un Certain Regard section of Cannes in 2002.


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