THE CEMETERY OF CINEMA
Thierno Souleymane Diallo / France, Senegal, Guinea, Saudi Arabia / 2023 / 90 min
Barefoot roadtrip around Guinea in search of the first film made by a local filmmaker. A charming and cinematic adventure, where the journey and the destination are equally important, and a film about collective memory and porous film reels.
Does a film exist if no one has seen it? Guinean film director Thierno Souleymane Diallo goes on a barefoot road trip around his country to find the mythical 1953 film ‘Mouramani’ – the first Guinean film made by a local filmmaker. But it is not easy to find the film or anyone who has seen it for that matter. Some believe it is about the Islamisation of the Mandinka people. Others that it is about the relationship between a dog and its owner. Along the way, Diallo passes old, abandoned cinemas and dusty piles of moisture-damaged film reels. ‘The Cemetery of Cinema’ is a charming, cinematic adventure in which the journey is almost as important as the destination, and where the encounters along the way remind us of the importance of preserving a shared memory and culturel heritage.