82 or 52min, original Haoussa version, English or French version available
The toughest gangs in Niger allow a local female documentary filmmaker to observe their world of violence and brutality, where everyone dreams of a way out. They call themselves the Hitler gang and spread fear in the streets of Zinder, Niger’s second-largest city. Hard-boiled and unemployed young men with no future convene around bodybuilding and crime in a part of the city that has historically been a no-go area. The director Aicha Macky is from Zinder herself, and she knows her city. With unprecedented access to an otherwise closed world – and with mutual trust from the protagonists – she documents the vicious circle of hopelessness and radicalisation, but also the ways to break it. Sinia Boy, Bawo, Ramsess and their friends all dream of a future beyond their harsh background. (CPH:DOX)
ANDANAFILMS information: The wind-swept town of Zinder in the heart of the Sahel region of Niger is a place travellers only pass through. Kara-Kara, the former lepers’ quarter, is the pariahs’ district of this town. Gangs referred to as the "Palais” have sprung up in this area and are spreading their influence throughout the town. Obsessed by a culture of bodybuilding and violence, the gang members induce fear in the population. Outside the moments spent together in a body-building camp, some of them follow the path that will lead them to a life of crime and prison or a violent death, others strive to pull themselves out of the rut they find themselves in. This is the case for Siniya, Bawo and Ramsess, whom the director, originally from Zinder, has succeeded in filming up close to reveal to us their survival strategies. By following them in their daily lives divided between their gang, their family and fending for themselves, she gives us a sense of their desire to break free from the cycle of violence which has built their identities.
2021 Visions du Réel, Nyon CPH:DOX
Cast and Crew
Director Aicha Macky
Producer Clara Vuillermoz (Les films du balibari), Ousmane Samassekou (Tabous production), Erik Winker (CORSO Films)