Algeria, Argentina, Vietnam, Angola, Uruguay, Mali, China, and Bosnia and Herzegovina: these countries have all been in the news over the past decade due to major cultural changes, and each is home to filmmakers urgently making feature films that address social, economic, and political issues. From September 15–October 1, the Walker Art Center presents the series
, a touring program by the Global Film Initiative, which provides essential production grants and distribution to 10 projects per year. As a center dedicated to emerging, global, and independent cinema, the Walker welcomes these under-recognized innovators from developing nations with limited resources for filmmaking. Evening and daytime screenings feature both dramas and comedies with engaging characters telling stories of life in unsettled times.
The Target Free Thursday Nights screenings at 7:30 pm on September 15, 22, and 29, feature introductions by local scholars: Daughter of Keltoum (La Fille de Keltoum) is introduced by Joëlle Vitiello, associate professor in the Department of French and Francophone Studies at Macalester College (September 15); Hollow City (Na cidade vazia) is introduced by Fernando Arenas, associate professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Minnesota (September 22); and Kabala is introduced by Cherif Keita, professor of French in the African/African American Studies Department at Carleton College (September 29). Additional evening screenings take place at 7:30 pm on September 16, 17, 23, 24, 30, and October 1.
Unless otherwise noted, all films are $8 ($6 Walker members) and are presented in the Walker Cinema. Tickets are available at walkerart.org/tickets or by calling 612.375.7600.
To connect young people with social studies, foreign language, and media arts curricula and provide deeper student engagement with contemporary films, cultural perspectives, and world events, the Walker offers four morning and afternoon screenings as well as free curriculum resources for teachers. Tickets are $4 per student (includes gallery admission). Schools designated more than 60% free or reduced lunch qualify for discounted tickets. For more information or to schedule a teacher preview, call 612.375.7614. The daytime screenings are open to the public. For series details, visit www.globalfilm.org.
September 15–October 1
Thursday, September 15, 7:30 pm FREE
_Daughter of Keltoum (La Fille de Keltoum) _
Directed by Mehdi Charef
Introduced by Joëlle Vitiello, associate professor in the Department of French and Francophone Studies at Macalester College
Raised in Switzerland, Rallia returns to Algeria for the first time since infancy to confront her birth mother about why she was given up for adoption. As she journeys through the barren villages in the Atlas Mountains, her western style and lack of conformity to local customs are met with hostility as her disconnection from her birth country becomes clear. 2001, Algeria, color, 35mm, in Arabic and French with English subtitles, 101 minutes.
There will be a repeat morning screening of this film on Tuesday, September 20, at 9: 30 am. Tickets are $8 ($6 Walker members; $4 students).
Friday, September 16, 7:30 pm
_Today and Tomorrow (Hoy y mañana) _
Directed by Alejandro Chomski
Amid Argentina’s ongoing economic catastrophe, a young actress struggles to keep her dignity as she faces her mounting debts. As the day progresses, her options become increasingly dangerous and lead her into the back alleys of Buenos Aires. 2003, Argentina, color, 35mm, in Spanish with English subtitles, 87 minutes.
Saturday, September 17, 3 pm
_Lili’s Apron (El Delantal de Lili) _
Directed by Mariano Galperin
When Ramón’s temper gets him fired from his job as a chef, he finds his macho attitude has not prepared him for the indignities of looking for work during the current Argentine economic crisis. In this dark comedy, he’s forced to masquerade as a woman in order to get a job as a housekeeper in an upscale home. 2004, Argentina, color, 35mm, in Spanish with English subtitles, 90 minutes.
Saturday, September 17, 7:30 pm
_Buffalo Boy (Mua len trua) _
Directed by Minh Nguyen-Vô
In this coming-of-age story, a teenage boy is charged with driving the family herd of buffalo—the sole source of survival on the farm—to higher ground during the rainy season. As other herders expose him to sex, drugs, and danger, he struggles with the responsibility of protecting the family capital. 2004, Vietnam, color, 35mm, in Vietnamese with English subtitles, 98 minutes.
Thursday, September 22, 7:30 pm FREE
_Hollow City (Na cidade vazia) _
Directed by Maria João Ganga
Introduced by Fernando Arenas, associate professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Minnesota
Following a massacre in his village, 11-year-old orphan N’dala is airlifted to safety in Luanda, the capital of Angola. Rejecting help from the nuns who initially saved him, he warily relies on other street children as he transitions into life in a big city that proves to be as dangerous as his war-torn village. 2004, Angola, color, 35mm, in Portuguese with English subtitles, 88 minutes.
There will be a repeat morning screening of this film on Friday, September 23, at 9:30 am. Tickets are $8 ($6 Walker members; $4 students).
Friday and Saturday, September 23 and 24, 7:30 pm
Directed by Juan Pablo Rebella and Pablo Stoll
Sibling rivalry causes Jacabo, an irascible sock-factory owner, to deceive his estranged brother, Herman. Panicked by a sudden visit from his more successful sibling, Jacabo asks a devoted employee to pose with him as a long-married couple. This humorous situation reveals more than anyone imagined when the sparks begin to fly between the faux wife and Herman. 2004, Uruguay, color, 35mm, in Spanish with English subtitles, 94 minutes.
_As Follows (Bregman, el siguiente) _
Directed by Federic Veiroj
An adolescent boy uncomfortably prepares for his Bar Mitzvah in Uruguay. 2004, Uruguay, color, 35mm, in Spanish with English subtitles, 13 minutes.
Tuesday, September 27, 9:30 am
Directed by Yamina Bachir
Set in a time when fundamentalist and government militias in Algeria both perpetuated crimes against the most vulnerable, Rachida is a moving story about a community—and, above all, the women in it—under the threat of terror. When a young woman is approached to participate in a bombing, her decision puts her at risk for retaliation and alters the rest of her life. 2002, Algeria, color, in Arabic and French with English subtitles, 100 minutes.
Thursday, September 29, 7:30 pm FREE
Directed by Assane Kouyaté
Introduced by Cherif Keita, professor of French in the African/African American Studies Department at Carleton College
A struggle between tradition and modern technology brings strife to a West African village. After failing his initiation into manhood, a youth is sent into exile. Ostracized upon his return, he must use a skill honed during his absence—well-drilling—to prove himself and restore the village’s most vital resource. 2002, Mali, color, 35mm, in Bambara with English subtitles, 107 minutes.
Friday, September 30, 9:30 am and 7:30 pm
_Uniform (Zhifu) _
Directed by Diao Yinan
A laconic laundry worker is startled by the amount of respect he receives when he dons a police uniform abandoned at work. He starts using the shirt to get dates, obtain bribes, and bully others. But when the police catch on, he’s forced to go on the run. 2003, China, color, 35mm, in Mandarin with English subtitles, 92 minutes.
Saturday, October 1, 3 pm
_What’s a Human Anyway? (Insan Nedir ki . . .?) _
Directed by Reha Erdem
In this madcap comedy set in present-day Istanbul, three characters put up a struggle as they face transitions into manhood. A six-year-old resists circumcision; a young man tries to get out of his military service; and the third refuses to leave the safe refuge of his parents’ home. Humor abounds in this tightly packed apartment complex where everyone is scrutinized. 2004, Turkey, color, 35mm, in Turkish with English subtitles, 128 minutes.
Saturday, October 1, 7:30 pm
_Fuse (Gori vatra) _
Directed by Pjer Zalicka
In this quirky comedy, opportunistic civic leaders force local Bosnian and Serbian enemies to make a show of reconciliation in order to secure a visit by President Clinton. Corruption and a healthy black market are to be suspended—or disguised—in order to trick the advance team of United Nations and American advisors. 2003, Bosnia and Herzegovina, color, 35mm, in Bosnian/Serbo-Croatian and English with English subtitles, 105 minutes.