We've Got to Leave Bamako

  • Il faut quitter Bamako
© RVPress
Genre : Drama
Type : Fiction
Original title :
Principal country concerned : Column : Cinema/tv
Year of production : 2013
Format : Feature
Running time : 90 (in minutes)

Two young women, a plane, a coffin.

Maïmouna, 30, from Paris, is returning for the first time to her country of origin, Mali, where she has to bury her father. He brought her up in France without ever going back to his birthplace, and he has left her the difficult task of arranging his funeral in Gao, in the Sahel. She must cope entirely on her own with reestablishing ties with the family that he fled from, and that she herself has no knowledge of.

On arriving in Bamako, however, Maïmouna misses her connection to Gao and finds herself stuck in the capital with the coffin and with no way of getting to the northern desert region where the burial of her father is supposed to take place. Then she meets Edith, thirty years of age just like her, a rather middle-class, very modern Malian woman, whose husband is about to take a second wife.

Edith offers her home to Maïmouna and the coffin until a solution can be found. The modern villa also houses the wedding ceremony for her husband's second wife, Alassane. The latter confides to Maïmouna the reasons for this unexpected second marriage: Edith is sterile and her husband, although he loves her, is concerned that an heir be provided, by another woman if necessary.

Maïmouna cannot comprehend how a woman as liberated as Edith can accept this degrading and painful situation. She is far from suspecting the effect that her words will have. That very night, Edith commits an act beyond repair.

Next morning Edith offers to take her to Gao, on the edge of the desert, by motorbike, and Maïmouna, unaware that Alassane is lying dead in the next room, accepts. It will be a dangerous journey, with her father's coffin in tow.

Reaching her final destination, the young woman from Paris discovers her African family: her grandmother, her aunt, a cousin. She rejects them all, however, convinced that they were the cause of her father's exile. The secrets that she will find out, together with the discovery of the murder committed by Edith, will force Maïmouna onto another, interior journey that will lead her towards her true identity.

A film by Aïssa Maïga

France · Color · 90'

Director''s note
IL FAUT QUITTER BAMAKO is above all the story of an irrational friendship between two women on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Both road movie and quest for identity, the film will be deeply marked by the different energies of Maïmouna, the French woman who in a confused way discovers her origins, and Edith, the Malian woman who chaotically asserts her identity. Although touching on serious themes (family secrets, female emancipation, grief and mourning), the screenplay falls into the kind of dramatic genre that leaves space for humor and the absurd. Our two female leads are two Amazons riding straight through the country, carrying with them their load of certainties, contradictions, strengths and weaknesses. Rather than insisting on the discourse of finding one's roots, my intention is to draw a portrait of two modern women.

Production Company''s Profile

Since its creation in 2007 Cinema Defacto has produced or co-produced 15 feature films with partners from 15 different countries, through innovative co-productions with up to 4 partners, all selected in class A festivals and sold by major sales agents worldwide.

Filmography (Cinema Defacto)
Story of Jen (2008)
La Lisière (2010)
Nos Résistances (2010)


Francia · Colore · 90'

Aïssa Maïga

Cinéma Defacto
40 rue de paradis
75010 Paris


1 files


1 files


  • Arterial network
  • Media, Sports and Entertainment Group (MSE)
  • Gens de la Caraïbe
  • Groupe 30 Afrique
  • Alliance Française VANUATU
  • Zimbabwe : Culture Fund Of Zimbabwe Trust
  • RDC : Groupe TACCEMS
  • Rwanda : Positive Production
  • Togo : Kadam Kadam
  • Niger : ONG Culture Art Humanité
  • Collectif 2004 Images
  • Africultures Burkina-Faso
  • Bénincultures / Editions Plurielles
  • Africiné
  • Afrilivres

With the support of