Hyenas

Director: Djibril Diop Mambety
Country: Senegal
Year: 1992
Running Time: 113 min
Language: Wolof with English subtitles

Mambety adapts a timeless parable of human greed into a biting satire of today’s Africa–betraying the hopes of independence for the false promises of Western materialism. Linguère Ramatou is a beautiful, young woman from a sleepy village who falls in love with a young man. When she becomes pregnant with his child, and he denies paternity so he could marry a wealthy wife, the villagers drive Linguère from home. Ideals shattered, she turns to prostitution and miraculously become the richest woman in the world, “as rich as the World Bank.”

About the Director

Djibril Diop Mambéty

Biography: The son of a Muslim cleric and member of the Lebou tribe, Djibril Diop Mambéty was born near Senegal’s capital city of Dakar in Colobane, a town featured prominently in some of his films. Mambéty’s interest in cinema began with theater. Having graduated from acting school in Senegal, Mambéty worked as a stage actor at the Daniel Sorano National Theater in Dakar until he was expelled for disciplinary reasons. In 1969, at age 24, without any formal training in filmmaking, Mambéty directed and produced the short film, Contras’ City. The following year Mambéty made Badou Boy, which won the Silver Tanit award at the 1970 Carthage Film Festival in Tunisia. Mambéty’s technically sophisticated and richly symbolic first feature-length film, Touki Bouki (1973), received the International Critics Award at Cannes Film Festival and won the Special Jury Award at the Moscow Film Festival, bringing the Senegalese director international attention and acclaim. Despite the film’s success, twenty years passed before Mambéty made another feature film. During this hiatus he made one short film in 1989, Parlons grand-mère. Hyenas (1992), Mambéty’s second and final feature film, was an adaptation of Friedrich Dürrenmatt’s play The Visit and was conceptualized as a continuation of Touki Bouki. At the time of his death, the film director had been working on a trilogy of short films called Contes des Petites Gens (Tales of the Little People). The first of the three films was Le Franc (1994). Mambéty had also been editing the second film of that series, The Little Girl Who Sold the Sun, which premiered posthumously in 1999. His early death to lung cancer, at age 53, occurred in a Paris hospital.

(Source: http://mubi.com/cast_members/17787)

Films Shown in AFF, Inc. Programs:
Badou Boy (1993);
Touki Bouki (1997,  2000);
Hyenas (2000, 2006, 2010);
Le Franc (2000, 2004);
The Little Girl Who Sold the Sun (1999, 2000, 2004, 2008).

Filmography:
Contras’ City (1969);
Badou Boy (1970);
Pour ceux qui savent (1971);
Touki Bouki (1973);
Parlons grand-mère (1989);
Hyenas (1992);
Le Franc (1994);
The Little Girl Who Sold the Sun (1999).

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