Untouched by the West


Time Out says

Drawn from a novel by colonial officer Diégo Brosset, this curious amalgam of ethnographic study, documentary photography and semi-dramatisation promises much but fails to reconcile its diverse imperatives. Following a nomadic community in Chad, with their conflicts, travails and daily rituals, it deploys an almost exclusively fixed camera to somewhat oppressively observe the barely performing participants. A troubling third person voice-over relays any psychological insights, while standing in for almost all the onscreen dialogue. There are some wonderful sequences - with figures wrapped in wind, sand and distance - but the imagery can equally slip into the purely aestheticised, free of implication, and, ironically, free of the grit of living in such a place. The choice to film in black and white seems to exemplify this. It's too easy a route to timelessness, although some of the compositions do contain echoes of George Rodger's masterly studies.


Release details

104 mins

Cast and crew

Raymond Depardon
Raymond Depardon
Ali Hamit
Brahim Jiddi
Wodji Ouardougou
Hassan Yoskoi
Raymond Depardon
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