Quartier Mozart

Secret Screenings

Cameroon, France  ·  1992  ·  DCP 2K  ·  Color  ·  79'  ·  o.v. French - Subt. English


Tuesday 11 | 8 | 2020, 21:00  ·  GranRex  ·  Sub. English

Secret Screening #6

Introduced by Lili Hinstin


Wednesday 12 | 8 | 2020, 18:00  ·  PalaVideo  ·  Sub. English

Secret Screening #6

In a popular suburb of Yaounde, a young girl is magically transformed into a swaggering Casanova nicknamed "My Guy". Several offbeat characters crowd the show, including the polygamist police chief, his beautiful daughter and a witch whose handshake can make men’s genitals disappear... The director’s first feature film, at the age of 25, won the Afrique en Création Award at the Cannes Film Festival and the Swissair/Crossair and "Carte Jeunes" Awards at the Locarno Film Festival in 1992.

Jean-Pierre Bekolo’s full-length debut Quartier Mozart, presented and laureled at Locarno, remains a kind of UFO, or rather a comet, in the galaxy of African cinema. Jean-Pierre Bekolo never achieved the notoriety of Djibril Diop Mambéty, but shares the latter’s extravagant sense of freedom, playfully combining local culture – in this case spell-casting witches, localboys who want to manage girls, plus the painful reality of polygamy for women – with extensive nods to Western filmmaking, whose codes Bekolo knows inside out. This urban drama, popular in tone but with a rich vein of fantasy, is woven around the highly entertaining but also challenging theme of sex change. The fantasy proposed is indeed far more than a pretext for an enjoyable comedy of manners: the director works it up into a biting social satire that challenges patriarchy, machismo, corruption and the countless unchecked abuses of a society in which humor is the weapon of the poor. In the early 1990’s, Bekolo’s film seemed to offer a glimpse of a bright new African auteur dawn, far from the raw style, bloodless aestheticism or the militant urgency of thefilms à sujet , and instead boldly speaking its own voice, with a generation of magnificent actors, a rapport with the colorful jargon of the neighborhoods, plus the unique rhythm of its editing, a direct inheritance from hip hop… What happened?

The screening of this film is intended as a pairing with Dr. Jekyll and Sister Hyde, presented as one of the Secret Screenings on 8 August”.

Lili Hinstin





Jean-Pierre Bekolo


Serge Amougou, Sandrine Ola’a, Jimmy Biyong, Essindi Mindja,  Atebass


Jean-Pierre Bekolo


Regis Blondeau


Philip Nikwé


Jean-Pierre Bekolo

Sound Designer

Newton I. Aduaka


Jean-Pierre Bekolo


Léa Baron

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