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Mambar Pierrette
Rosine Mbakan (2023)
Index card
  • Title: Mambar Pierrette
  • Original Title: Mambar Pierrette
  • Country: Bélgica
  • Screening date: 07/05/2024
  • Spanish distributor: Docs Barcelona
  • Direction: Rosine Mbakan
  • Rating: TP

When it rains in Douala, the water overflows from the ravines and runs into the streets. People go on their own, looking for any dry space where they can put their feet. Mambar Pierrette, our protagonist, empties the water that has entered her house with the help of her children.

On arriving at her sewing workshop, located in a slum in the city of Cameroon, the same ordeal begins again. The start of the new school year is a busy time for the seamstress. Pierrette is exhausted, from dawn to dusk with school uniforms. But she always finds time to listen to the concerns of her neighbours and friends who pass by.

It's not that she doesn't have her own worries: she is the mother of three children and has a husband who refuses to contribute to the household, she never has enough money, her customers always pay her back and the repair of her old sewing machine costs her a fortune. But these are minor inconveniences compared to the misfortune that befalls him. Her days are long and dense, the expectation of her children is great, but will the Douala rain allow Pierrette to offer her children a beautiful return to school?

Strictly speaking, Mambar Pierrette is a feature film, but the director, Rosine Mbakam, who has experience as a documentary filmmaker, films Pierrette's daily life as if it were really happening to her. The fact that most of the actors are not professionals and play themselves reinforces the sense of authenticity. This drama is real.