Longinotto is one of the best documentarians working today, and in her engrossing latest (co-directed with Ayisi), she characteristically gives us firm footing in an unfamiliar milieu – here it’s the courtrooms of Kumba, Cameroon – with her use of cogent, Wiseman-influenced verité. The awful testimonies of rape and domestic violence and the defendants’ general lack of denial and remorse make bitterly clear that women and children are little more than disposable merchandise in this village. Yet in the scorching determination of prosecutor Vera Ngassa, as well as the stunning resilience of the adult plaintiffs who want better lives for their daughters, the film locates genuine hope for the future.
Friday August 11 2006
Kim Longinotto, Florence Avisi