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rédacteur
Hassouna Mansouri
publié le
16/05/2010
films, artistes, structures ou événements liés à cette critique
les commentaires liés à cette critique

Hassouna Mansouri


Les deux réalisateurs


Renaud Barret & Florent de la Tullaye




Benda Bilili at home


Benda Bilili on the Croisette


Ricky & Coco


The Q and A session, Cannes Fest






Benda Bilili at home


Benda Bilili at home


Benda Bilili on stage




Benda Bilili on the road


Ricky


Coco


Roger Landu


Roger Landu


Ricky

retour
 
Benda Bilili inflames the French "côte d'Azur"
63rd Cannes Film Festival (May, 12th - 23rd, 2010)

It is not very often that a film festival opens with a documentary. But this was the case this year in Cannes Film Festival, but not in the official programs. The Director's Fortnight, a parallel section dedicated to the authors, opened with Staff Benda Bilili, by two French film makers: Florent de la Tullaye and Renaud Barret.

The opening ceremony was actually particularly animated. After the tribute given to french female film maker Agnes Varda who received the annual price given by the French guild of film makers, "Carrosse d'or", the group of musicians was invited to the stage. They didn't play any music, they only saluted the public. Music, that's what it will be about in the movie. The ovation after the screening witnesses of the deep effect the film got on people.


Film Annonce BENDA BILILI! par BendaBilili

Staff is a group of handicapped musicians who grow up in a poor neighbourhood in Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of Congo). The spontaneous music they play, a mixture of rumba, blues, and reggae… will highjack them on the international stage of the most famous musical scenes al over the world. The film tries to show how the dream of these guys became a reality.

In fact the dream of Riky, the head of the group, was not so ambitious. His vision was more local: all what he wanted is to bring the bend to celebrity in Kinshasa, and perhaps in Congo. He could not guess that their music is going to be appreciated abroad and have such a success internationally.
The young Roger, "a street child" had only one little ambition: to join the group of the stars of the ghetto. He was going to be a little thief, a member of gang, a criminal perhaps; he is now a star going around in the big European cities playing music, getting money, enjoying meeting people and sharing nice moment with everybody.

It sounds like a folk story but it was not so simple. The group had to struggle against the pitfalls of the street. Their place, a centre for handicapped people where they were staying is destroyed by a fire. Could they ever hope that they will make it? They cold because they stayed united and believed deeply in their music.

The two film makers followed them for five years from the first rehearsal until their world tour. Now the documentary is showed in the most important film festival in the world. The group is going to perform in the Fnac (French famous book and CD store). They getting more and more known and appreciated.

Nevertheless ether is a hic. What is attracting in this experience? Is it the talent of film making? Is it the music? Is it the fact that these musicians are handicapped? Or, is a message of hope to spread?
The fact that these guys could make it is nice and it is a sign of hope. This is sure. The same with the good intention of the film makers to spread this hope and give a tribute to the fight of these men.

Nevertheless, we must be honest also. The music is not particularly original. It is very lively with a lot of nice rhythms but really very simple. The group is not inventing any special music only putting together what we know already. One could easily admit that what people appreciate that some handicapped men can play music correctly with some sensational gestures.
Nothing special neither on the level of film making. The directors followed the group trying to reconstitute the story that's it. It is as if to say that the film is made to say "look they also could do it", nothing more. And this is also an honest and respectful attitude towards the group itself.

To say it briefly, the film is for sure useful. On the one hand, it helps to make the bend more known. On the other hand, it has a kind of message: handicap and poverty are not a fatality. Whenever there is a will, it is possible to get over. However, we have to be aware not to mix up charity, compassion and appreciation of an art work whether it concerns the bend of musicians or the film made about it.

by Hassouna Mansouri

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   liens films

Benda Bilili ! 2010
Renaud Barret, Florent de la Tullaye


   liens artistes

Barret Renaud


de la Tullaye Florent


   liens structures

Belle kinoise production (La)
France | Paris

Cinéart-Cinélibre
Belgique | Bruxelles

Orange Studio
France | PARIS

Screenrunner
France | Saint-Ouen

Sophie Dulac Distribution
France | PARIS

Vanuit het Zuiden (Depuis le Sud)
Pays-Bas | AMSTERDAM

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Benda Bilili !
bande annonce

 
   


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