Written and directed by Abderrahmane Sissako. With Danny Glover, Aissa Maiga and Tiecoura Traore. In French and Bambara with subtitles. Distributed by New Yorker Films. No MPAA rating (violence, adult themes). 1 hour, 50 mins. Playing at the Ritz East.
What's going on here?
In Bamako, Mauritian writer-director Abderrahmane Sissako's impassioned meditation on the plight of modern Africa, the courtyard of a Mali building - where families live, where water is pumped, where flies and dust intersect in the hot breeze of an outdoor fan - has been turned over to an international tribunal. Judges in fancy robes sit at a table, lawyers wait to speak, a few Malians likewise take their turn.