Dir: Abderrahmane Sissako
Starring: Ibrahim Ahmed, Toulou Kiki, Abel Jafri
The place name synonymous with mystery and a metaphor for a far away, exotic location, “Timbuktu” the film does not disappoint its audience’s expectations. The cinematography emphasises the otherworldliness of the city, surrounded by the Sahara’s impressively sculptured dunes. When a brigade of Islamic extremists begins its take over of northern Mali in 2012 Timbuktu is subjected to a fundamentalist application of Shariah Law. The peaceful inhabitants, quietly observant and in no need of “advice” on matters of faith from the often hypocritical Jihadists, must endure petty injustices, such as having to adhere to a ludicrous dress code and being forbidden to listen to music or play football! Eventually they will know the full horror of religious fanaticism. An extremely relevant film, gripping, compassionate and, importantly, not without its own droll sense of humour.