Faces of women

  • Visages de femmes [réal: Désiré Écaré]
© DR
Genre : Drama
Type : Fiction
Original title : Die Gesichter der Frauen [West Germany] | Visi di donne [Italy]
Principal country concerned : Column : Cinema/tv
Year of production : 1985
Format : Feature
Running time : 105 (in minutes)

In the Ivory Coast, the trajectories of three women are juxtaposed, linked by traditional songs and dances... A film full of sincerity that depicts the quest for freedom and independence of these African women.

The fate of various women is told in a humorous way to show the daily struggle African women have to go through to obtain a rightful place in a society that keeps them in the background, even if they are nicknamed "Mama Benz" because they have the economic power and a certain strength.

Albertine N'Guessan, Eugénie Cissé-Roland, Carmen Levry, Sidiki Bakaba, Kouadou Brou

a film by Désiré ÉCARÉ

Ivory Coast / France, 1985, Fiction, 1h30 mins

2nd Feature (sometimes credited as 1st Feature)

Visages de femmes - film annonce.mov from La Traverse on Vimeo.

TITLE (English): Faces of Women
Original Title (French): Visages de femmes
TITLE (German): Die Gesichter der Frauen [West Germany]
TITLE (Italian): Visi di donne
Year: 1985
Countries: France | Ivory Coast
Genre: Drama / Comedy
Runtime: 105 min
Languages: French | Aidoukrou
Color: Color
Sound Mix: Mono
Format: 35mm, DVD

"At a festival, a chorus of women sing and dance as two stories unfold. In a village, a young women with a jealous husband gives him something to be jealous about when his younger brother comes for a visit. When her husband threatens her, she learns self-defense, but her troubles may not be over. In a coastal city, Mrs. Congas runs a fish-drying business. She wants a less smelly job, so she seeks a loan to open a restaurant. When she's turned down, two of her daughters visit the banker and bat their eyes; the loan comes through. But her troubles aren't over: every male relative and tribal cousin shows up, praising her lazy husband and expecting money, food, and help." IMDb

Cast (in credits order)
Albertine N'Guessan.... A village Woman
Carmen Levry... Fanta
Eugénie Cissé-Roland... Bernadette, Fish Seller
Sidiki Bakaba... Koiassi
Kouadou Brou... Brou
Véronique Mahilé
Anny Brigitte (aka Hanny Tchelley / Hanny Tchelley-Etibou)
Alexis Leache
Victor Couzyn
Fatou Fall
Siriki Traoré
Désiré Bamba
The Adioukrou community of the village of Lopou

Désiré Ecaré

Désiré Ecaré

Désiré Ecaré

Cinematography by
Dominique Gentil
François Migeat

Film Editing by
Nicolas Barachin
Madame Djé-Djé
Gisèle Miski

Sound Department
Jean-Pierre Kaba.... sound engineer
Kouacou N'Guessan.... sound engineer
Marc Allaud.... assistant sound engineer
Alain Garnier.... sound mixer

Assistant camera
Lohoun Zikaki

Assistant editor

Music Department
Lokou.... musician: folkloric music

Release dates
France... 26 June 1985
USA... 13 February 1987 (New York City, New York)
UK... 4 December 2007 (Africa at the Pictures)

Production Company
Films de la Lagune

New Yorker Films (1987) (USA) (French, Aidoukrou, subtitled)

* Selection : Trésors et curiosités (Label Lumière Classics) /// Festival Lumière (Lyon, France, 2021) - www.festival-lumiere.org/manifestations/visages-de-femmes.html

* Selection - A Transatlantic Journey: Black African and American Cinemas /// 15th LES 3 CONTINENTS Film Festival 1993 (Nantes, France) - www.3continents.com/en/film/visages-de-femmes/

* Nominee: Golden Charybdis /// Taormina International Film Festival 1985

* FIPRESCI Prize - Critics Week /// Cannes Film Festival 1985 (France). World Premiere: on 9 May 1985 - www.semainedelacritique.com/fr/edition/1985/film/visages-de-femmes


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