A group of children, fleeing the war, is taken to Luanda accompanied by a nun. When they reach the aeroplane, 12-year-old N'Dala decides to leave the group and to reconnoitre the city. The nun then starts her unceasing quest for the missing boy. N'Dala, only carrying a textile bag and a doll made of wire, walks through the busy streets filled with people and traffic. Later he finds the tranquility of the island off the coast, where he meets the old fisherman Antonio, with whom he becomes friends. Not much later, he meets the lively, whimsical Zé, who is a little older than he is. N'Dala starts to experience the city and its inhabitants as increasingly forbidding and he would most like to return to the countryside from whence he came. Then he meets Joka, a fringe figure who persuades him to help with a robbery in exchange for money. With this film, Maria Joao Ganga wanted to provide a realistic sketch of the bitter political situation in Angola. One of her most important motivations for making In the Empty City was to provide a picture of an African city without awakening feelings of a patronising sympathy or associations with the sensationalism of war.
N'dala___ Roldan Pinto João
Zé___ Domingos Fernandes
Joka___ Raúl Rosáro
Rosita___ Júlia Botelho
Nun___ Ana Bustorff
Writer / Director___ Maria João Ganga
Production Company___ Integrada prod.
Producer___ François Gonot
Cinematographer___ Jacques Besse
Production Designer___ Sao Amaro
Music___ Ne Goncalves
PRIX / FESTIVALS / AWARDS / DISTINCTIONS / TELEVISIONS
2004 : Cinemafrica Film Festival | STOCKHOLM, Suéde | 2004
2004: Cinemafrica Film Festival 2004 | STOCKHOLM, Sweden | 2004