THIS MAGNIFICENT CAKE!
dir. Marc James Roels & Ema de Swaef, 2018
44 mins. Belgium.
In Dutch, French, Aka, and Malinke with English subtitles.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 16 – 7:30 PM
THURSDAY, AUGUST 29 – 10 PM
An official selection at Cannes Directors’ Fortnight, Toronto International Film Festival and Telluride Film Festival, THIS MAGNIFICENT CAKE! (CE MAGNIFIQUE GÂTEAU!) is an unforgettable work of stopmotion animation exploring the bitter milieu of Belgium-occupied Congo.
In the late 19th century, keen to compete with other European imperial powers on the continent, King Leopold II of Belgium proclaimed, “I do not want to miss a good chance of getting us a slice of this magnificent African cake.” The subsequent occupation of the Congo would come to attract a contingent of servants, merchants and miscellaneous bourgeois driven by everything from insatiable greed to existential fear. From the intimate stories of these characters — many of whom pass through a luxury hotel in the middle of the jungle – emerges a greater narrative concerning the imperialist mentality.
In a film by turns surreal, darkly comic and brutal, directors Marc James Roels and Emma de Swaef ultimately turn their critical gaze on the colonists themselves in a work of stunning, mysterious beauty.
Presented by GKIDS.
Niki Lindroth von Bahr, 2017
14 min., Swedish w/ English subs
Marc James Roels & Emma de Swaef, 2012,
17 min., No dialogue
Festivals and Awards: Quinzaine des Réalisateurs – Cannes 2018, Telluride Film Festival – 2018, TIFF – Special Jury Mention, Annecy Animation Film Festival, Animafest Zagreb – Best Feature Film Grand Prix, Ottawa Animation Film Festival – Feature Grand Prix