Dance to the Spirits

Direction
Year
2009
Country
  • Spain
Duration
79min
Audio Tracks
Subtitles

Dance to the Spirits is a creative documentary project that was shot in Nsola, an Evuzok village in the middle of the south Cameroon jungle. To the Evuzok there are two kinds of diseases that require different treatments: the «natural» ones and the ones from the night world, caused by sorcery. This is the story of Mba Owona Pierre the village chief and the ngengang, the «healer». He handles the sicknesses that come from the night world where spirits live and attack his people. This way Pierre is the anti-sorcerer; he has a special gift and a responsibility towards his fellow villagers.

The dance to the spirits is his most important healing ritual. It is at the same time a performance to overwhelm those who assist but also an authentic catharsis. Pierre travels to the night world so that he can liberate Christine from the curse she suffers from. It goes on for several hours in which the ngengang dresses up with the help of two neophytes, talks and laughs with the participants like a true entertaining host. He sings, dances, enters into a trance and follows all the steps of the healing ritual to treat his patient. In the next day Pierre comes out of his house to his daily routines: the cleaning of his porch, the seating up of the fire for the teapot… With the first light, everything is back to normal.

This film is the portrait of an extraordinary character and a tribute to the Evuzok culture.

Details

  • Original title
    Danza a los Espíritus
  • Direction
  • Screenplay
    Ricardo Íscar, Daria Esteva
  • Dir. of Photo.
    Ricardo Íscar
  • Editing
    Núria Esquerra, Raúl Cuevas
  • Sound
    Sosthene Fokam Kamga
  • Duration
    79 min (46-90 min.)
  • Year
    2009
  • Country
    • Spain
  • Colour
    • Colour
  • Production
  • Festivals
    • Rotterdam International Film Festival (2010)
    • Festival Internacional de Cine Documental de Navarra “Punto de Vista” (2010)
    • Buenos Aires Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente (BAFICI) (2010)
    • Festival de Cine de Málaga (2010)
    • Jean Rouch International Film Festival (2010)
    • Beach Festival du Documentaire (Kribi. Cameroun) (2010)
    • Parnu International Documentary and Anthropology Film Festival (Estonia) (2010)
    • Les États Généraux du Film Documentaire (Lussas. France) (2010)
    • Planet in Focus International Environmental Film & Video Festival in Toronto, Canada (2010)
    • Muestra Cinematográfica del Atlántico - Alcances (2010)
    • DOK Leipzig (2010)
    • DocLisboa (2010)
    • Festival de Cine Arica Nativa (Chile) (2010)
    • Vienna International Film Festival (Viennale) (2010)
    • Festival Internacional de Cine de Cali (2010)
    • forumdoc.bh.2010 (Bello Horizonte, Brasil) (2010)
    • Festival International du Film Documentaire Images en Live (Yaoundé, Cameroun) (2010)
    • Festival Mondial des Arts Nègres (Dakar) (2010)
    • FESPACO (Burkina faso) (2011)
    • Bradford International Film Festival (2011)
    • Russian Anthropological Film Festival (RAFF) Ekaterinburg (Russia) (2011)
    • PLANET DOC (Warsaw) (2011)
    • RAI International Festival of Ethnographic Film at UCL, London (2011)
    • Festival de Cine Africano de Tarifa (2011)
    • IV Festival Internacional de Cinema - FIC Luanda

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Doc Alliance is a creative partnership of 7 key European documentary film festivals. Our aim is to advance the documentary genre, support its diversity and promote quality creative documentary films.