They Are We | Chicago Reader

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They Are We

They Are We


79 minutes · 2014

This documentary about the Banta, an African tribe based in Sierra Leone, is a fascinating ethnographic lesson that also works as a mystery story. Director Emma Christopher, a history professor at the University of Sydney, begins in Cuba, documenting black musical rituals that date back to the slave era, and then arrives in Sierra Leone with the footage, traveling from village to village until she finds the very one where the rituals originated. Eventually Christopher introduces the villagers to some of their distant Cuban relatives, and their spirited meeting makes for a moving climax. In English and subtitled Krio and Spanish.

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