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Special events and interviews

Screen Epiphany: Ben Okri introduces Yeelen

The poet and novelist introduces this work of great beauty and mysticism, set in West Africa.

Image from BFI Screen Epiphany: Ben Okri introduces Yeelen

Mali 1987
Dir Souleymane Cissé
With Issiaka Kane, Aoua Sangare, Niamanto Sanogo
105min
35mm
English subtitles
Certificate PG

Poet and novelist Ben Okri introduces Yeelen, a film set in the sun-baked landscapes of West Africa, which follows the relationship between a sorcerer and his son and the ensuing conflict between them. Cissé wanted to make a film in which ‘the ancient depths of African culture will surge up again,’ and here he presents a work of great beauty and mysticism – often cited as a stand-out in world cinema.


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