CRITICAL – The director of Marius and Jeannette evokes the revolutionary and dancing fever which seized Mali in 1962. A nice film but too didactic.
We had left Robert Guédiguian in Marseille in Gloria mundi , horribly reactionary film, overwhelming the youth with all evils (debauchery, greed), under the disillusioned gaze of his generation (he is 68 years old). The director of Marius and Jeannette couldn’t do worse. Twist in Bamako offers him an opportunity to redeem himself. Although, by filming young people in love with dance and freedom in Mali in 1962, Guédiguian once again suggests that it was better before. But he does it elsewhere, in a foreign land, in a barely independent country, “Freed from French colonial tutelage”, as its hero says, Samba (Stéphane Bak). This son of a wealthy trader from Bamako has the revolution firmly in place. He travels the country led by Modibo Keïta, pan-Africanist and Third Worldist president, to explain to peasants and villagers the virtues of socialism and cooperatives. This does not prevent him from falling in love with Lara, a young girl forcibly married to a bittern.