Mediterranea (2015)


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This remarkably timely, eye-opening film charts the death-defying struggle of African migrants as they risk everything to start a new life in Europe. Ayiva (first time actor Koudous Seihon in a revelatory performance) and Abas (Alassane Sy) are close friends from Burkina Faso determined to make it to Italy in order to find work and provide for their families back home. But even after surviving the harrowing journey-desert bandits, a treacherous sea voyage, arrest-nothing can prepare the two men for the hostility and violence that awaits them. A gripping tale of survival told with vivid realism, Mediterranea immerses viewers in the heart of a humanitarian crisis that for far too many is a lived reality.

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Critic Reviews for Mediterranea

All Critics (21) | Top Critics (8)

This debut feature from director Jonas Carpignano is often both harrowing and moving though this film festival favorite...falls short of some of the similar, and even more tragic, stories that can be heard just by turning on the news.

Dec 10, 2015 | Rating: 3.5/5

It's a slow-burn study in feeling powerless and unwelcome, anchored by Seihon's performance as a man patient and adept at sussing out and adapting to what others need until he just can't do it any longer.

Dec 4, 2015

This is a story packed with the sort of heartbreak and worry that would be hard to sit through were it not for American director Jonas Carpignano's touching, tender narrative skill.

Dec 3, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Offers a deliberately muted, finely textured account of the ordeals many Africans endure both before and after voyages to Europe in search of better lives.

Nov 20, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Carpignano glosses over much of the sociopolitical context in his depictions of the chain of events.

Nov 20, 2015 | Full Review…

This calm, hardheaded film never sacrifices its toughness for a swooning, misty-eyed moment of hope.

Nov 19, 2015 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Mediterranea

Carpignano's debut is sensitive to tackle this delicate subject matter with the objectivity that it deserves, offering a realistic look at the difficult life of African migrants in Europe and achieving an honest note of sadness in the end without any need of sentimentality to move us.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

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