Adanggaman Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 8 Critics What's this?

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Set in the late 17th century on the Western coast of Africa, Adanggaman is a provocative retelling of the African slave experience, based on historical facts. (Film Forum)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 8
  2. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. 88
    The film's disturbing images are presented matter-of-factly, which makes them more powerful, not less.
  2. 80
    The narrative motion is tricky; first it canters, then shifts into a heady, quick gallop. What's most fascinating about Adanggaman are the scenes that feel like anecdotal rest stops but that are actually building into a nuanced and engrossing whole.
  3. This one uses sweeping compositions of nearly solitary figures as a reminder of what individuals stood to lose, and an auction scene is horrifying -- some livestock and a basket of everyday items are exchanged for a man's future.
  4. Ostensibly factual, helplessly self-conscious -- Adanggaman is being touted as the continent's first film about slavery as it was experienced on African soil—where the victims and enslavers were both native peoples.
  5. 63
    The film doesn't always take advantage of its dramatic potential (except for its strong soundtrack), as it relies too heavily on scenes of crazed warriors in makeup and costume, running and screaming and jumping up and down.
  6. 63
    Well-acted and nicely photographed, and has good action sequences, even if the screenplay (by M'Bala, Jean-Marie Adiaffi and Bertin Akaffou) is simplistic and there are slow stretches.
  7. Reviewed by: David Rooney
    Dramatically naive at times, but still represents a refreshingly ambitious, imaginative film in a period of creative underachievement for African cinema.

See all 8 Critic Reviews

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