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Pet Sins April 2010

The Night of Truth

The Night of Truth (La Nuit de la V‚rit‚), a 2004 film by director Fanta R‚gina Nacro of Burkina Faso, is a parable of reconciliation and revenge in the aftermath of ethnic violence. Although the story is set in an imaginary country, the powerful tale of the potential for both unspeakable cruelty and heroic compassion within a single human being resonates with recent and current conflicts not just in Africa but in the rest of the world.

In Nacro's film, the President and the Colonel, leaders of two fictional ethnic groups - the Nayaks and the Bonandes - join in celebration to mark a peace agreement after a decade of civil war. But not everyone attending the celebraton desires peace or wants to forgive. Will the well-intentioned event end in greater discord and break the fragile peace? Soumari, a young woman who was born to marriage between a Nayak and a Bonande, uncovers treachery and races against time to prevent further tragedy. But can this genocide survivor, mistrusted by some of her mother's people, be able to avert disaster in the face of the unforgiving wheels of retribution? The Night of Truth was awarded "Best Screenplay" at the 2004 San Sebastian International Film Festival.