Touki Bouki (Senegal: 1973)


Djibril Diop Mambéty

Cast list

Magaye Niang: Mory
Mareme Niang: Anta
Aminata Fall: Aunt Oumy
Ousseynou Diop: Charlie
Josephine Baker: Herself (Voice)
Christoph Colomb
Ndou Labia
Mustapha Ture


Writing Credit: Dijbril Diop Mambéty


The story of Touki Bouki goes back centuries: men have always set out for new lands where they believe time never stops… Only few adventurers seem to make it, but that has never stopped anyone… Djibril left his country with the dream of finding success and solace in Europe. He soon discovered, however, the cruelty of life. While his dream fell apart little by little Djibril found he was unable to leave “Europe”, his host country. That was when returning to Africa became the real dream for him. Ending his days in Africa was a dream he would never fulfill. “Touki Bouki” is a prophetic film. Its portrayal of 1973 Senegalese society is not too different from today’s reality. Hundreds of young Africans die every day at the Strait of Gibraltar trying to reach Europe (Melilla and Ceuta). Who has never heard of that before? All their hardships find their voice in Djibril’s film: the young nomads who think they can cross the desert ocean and find their own lucky star and happiness but are disappointed by the human cruelty they encounter.


Reviews and Articles:

Vincent Canby, “Review/Film; A Dream Of Escape To Paris New York Times (Newspaper)

Jeremy Heilman, “Touki Bouki: The Journey of the Hyena,”  Movie Martyr (Blog)

Jonathan Rosenbaum, “Touki Bouki,Chicago Reader  (Online Magazine)

Dennis Schwartz, “Touki Bouki,Ozus’ World (Blog)

Academic Articles:

Djibril et l'esthétique: Touki Bouki, un film de rupture/Djibril and the Aesthetics: Touki Bouki, a Film of Rupture by Frank Ukadike. Edrans d'Afrique, Vol. 24 (1998) pp. 26-33

'Entering and Leaving Modernity' -- Utopia and Dystopia in Mambety's Touki Bouki and Hyenes by Patrick Williams. Critical Studies, Vol. 14, No. 1 (2000) pp. 124-134

Touki-Bouki: The New Wave on the Cinematic Shores of Africa by Anny Wynchank. South African Theatre Journal, Vol. 12, No. 1-2, (May 1998) pp. 53-72

Racines et parcours, dans le film Touki Bouki ou le voyage de la hyène de Djibril Diop Mambety by Anny Wynchank. French Studies in Southern Africa, Vol. 36 (2006) pp. 135-148

L'Illusion dans le cinéma de l'Afrique noire francophone: Une Lecture de 'La Vie est belle', 'Le Franc', 'Saaraba', et 'Touki-Bouki' by Martine Ernestine Ngo Yick Boumtje II. Vol. 63, No. 11 (May 2003) p. 3943


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Touki Bouki Senegal 1973 Djibril Diop Mambéty
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