Senegalese Director Moussa Toure ‘s “La Pirogue”: The Tragedy of Illegal Immigration

La Pirogue - Photo:

La Pirogue – Photo:

Happy Saturday!
I’ve been wanting to write about Senegalese director Moussa Toure’s masterpiece film entitled “La Pirogue”. The movie is currently being presented at the 2013 edition of the Pan-African Festival of Film & TV, otherwise known as FESPACO, in Ouagadougou. Today is actually the last day of the Festival, which started last February.

Not only am I especially proud to write about a film produced by fellow Senegalese director Moussa Toure, but I’m also relieved that the subject of illegal immigration is finally looked at , and tackled in a way that highlights the human experience behind it more than the actual gruesome, and sometimes unjust reporting of the facts resulting from it.

In “La Pirogue”, Senegalese director Moussa Toure tackles the perilous journey that many African immigrants undertake to illegally migrate to Spain, in a boat resembling a largely oversized dinghy, otherwise known as a “pirogue”. Many undertake this dangerous journey out of sheer desperation, and for many different reasons. In “La Pirogue”, Toure takes a brutally honest look at the human experience behind the stories of these men and women who choose to risk their lives to reach an illusive “Eldorado”. And many do lose their lives in the process, while others just end up coming back home with broken dreams and void gazes.

In “La Pirogue”, Senegalese director Moussa Toure tells the interweaving stories of these men and women from various backgrounds and ethnicities, who embark towards their death to be reunited with a lover, or find adequate medical help, or even finally realize their dreams of amassing enough money to build a house back home…In this powerful movie, Toure also lets out a loud scream, calling at the African and Senegalese authorities to take a good, hard look at their policies and the injustice of their institutions, to rethink a more equitable distribution of resources and riches, to put itself in question again and again, so the tragedies that happen on board so many capsizing “pirogues” do not repeat themselves…

Check out the trailer of “La Pirogue”:

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