As the cradle of civilization, Africa has seen its people and resources colonized and exploited for generations. It’s a persistent issue that faces the continent as many countries step into the global economy and modern age, and Hubert Sauper‘s upcoming documentary “We Come As Friends” is a bracing look at the new face of colonialism.
Winner of the Special Jury Prize in the World Documentary category at the Sundance Film Festival in 2014, and specifically cited for its Cinematic Bravery, the picture details the aftermath of South Sudan’s vote for independence, and the various factions and interests aiming to gain influence and control of the land and resources. Here’s the official synopsis:
WE COME AS FRIENDS is a modern odyssey—a dizzying, almost science fiction-like journey into the heart of Africa. At the moment when Sudan, the continent’s largest country, is being divided into two nations, an old “civilizing” ideology re-emerges—one of colonialism and a clash of empires—with new episodes of bloody (and holy) wars over land and resources. Acclaimed documentarian Hubert Sauper takes us on a voyage in his tiny, self-made aircraft, leading us into the most improbable locations and into people’s thoughts and dreams in both stunning and heartbreaking ways. Chinese oil workers, UN peacekeepers, Sudanese warlords, and American evangelists ironically weave common ground in this singular documentary.
“We Come As Friends” opens on August 14th via BBC Worldwide North America. Check out the powerful trailer and exclusive poster below.