Critic Consensus: A courtroom drama and a portrait of everyday Mali life, Bamako approaches both subjects with equal skill and success.
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Critic Reviews for Bamako
[An] intimate, urgent and wildly imaginative indictment of post-colonial economic policies in Africa.
Trial movies can be painful, but Bamako is a powerful polemic leavened with moments of beauty and humor.
Bamako is an attack on globalization that is endlessly cogent, confrontational -- and, best of all, as captivating as it is illuminating.
[Director] Sissako somehow manages to reconcile the passionate words of the debate and the mundane activities surrounding it, but he seems most interested in noting and even marveling at the subtle comedy of their coexistence.
[Director] Sissako has an unusual camera eye, patient and alert to the ebb and flow of both the courtroom sequences and the outside scenes. The music is wonderful as well.
Audience Reviews for Bamako
[font=Century Gothic]"Bamako" is set in the capital of Mali where a trial is being argued in the case of the African peoples vs the World Bank, alleging the World Bank through its usurious loans keeps Africa in a state of perpetual poverty. But after the opening arguments point out that the World Bank debt payments dwarf the social services budget of several countries, and the effect of poverty on the citizenry, very little evidence is presented, either way. Alas, the lawsuit is too broad to serve as the basis of a narrative movie and does not adequately give a face to African poverty.(The movie "Yesterday" did excel by bringing the AIDS epidemic down to a human level. And say what you will about "Boston Legal", but that is what it does on a weekly basis, with the issues of the day.) And despite the movie's urgent message, it almost gets lost in its own stridency towards the end.[/font]
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