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Category:    Home > Reviews > Drama > Slavery > Africa > History > Adanggaman (2000/New Yorker Films)

Adanggaman (2000/New Yorker Films)


Picture: C     Sound: C     Extras: C     Film: B



Roger Gnoan M’Bala’s Adanggaman (2000) is a Ivory Coast/Switzerland co-production that dares to graphically deal with how many acts of criminality involving African slaves had to do with the destruction of hundreds of years of African civilization and Black Africans selling other Black Africans “down the river” to slavery and death.


The title refers to a king who made all kinds of profit and created much terror in his rule, speeding up the slave trade process and gaining all kinds of wealth and favor from the Europeans (and eventually Americans) who built an entire economy on all of it.  It seems like a highly politically incorrect project and no doubt would not have been seen from Hollywood (as good as Spielberg’s Amistad was) could have been made there.  This is a raw portrait from the victim’s point of view with no trace of “Euroisms” whatsoever.  Unlike the tired cycle of slavery films (some made under seemingly sinister circumstances during a political rollback period in the U.S.) that never had this point of view, this film does uncompromisingly, making it a key film on the subject.  If you have to see films on the subject, this should be at the top of your list.


The letterboxed 1.78 X 1 color image is softer than a new production should be, damaging the impact of the feature to some extent in playback.  The same applies to the Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo can be barely so and very compressed.  Extra include an illustrated paper pullout inside the DVD case, historical viewpoint featurette (11:04) and four trailers for other New Yorker DVDs.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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