Marche sur l’eau / Above Water
by Aïssa Maïga
2021, France, 90 mins
7:00 pm on Sept 25, 2022
About the movie
English— From one end of the globe to the other, water is becoming increasingly scarce. For a billion people, access to safe drinking water is almost non-existent… a crisis with huge consequences. As a result, millions of families spend their lives trying to get access to water. Houlaye, 12 years-old, lives in a village in Tatis, Niger. She walks for several kilometers every day to fetch water. It is abundant during rainy season, but not found during the dry season. However, two hundred meters below the surface, there is a water source that goes far beyond their imagination. Houlaye’s aunt Suri convinced an NGO to build a well in the village, It is the promise of a new life for those men and women who, unknowingly, had been walking on water forever.
Française— Au nord du Niger, le village de Tatiste, victime du réchauffement climatique, se bat pour avoir accès à l’eau. Chaque jour, Houlaye quatorze ans, comme d’autres jeunes, marche des kilomètres pour aller puiser l’eau, essentielle à la vie du village. Cette tâche quotidienne les empêche, entre autres, d’être assidus à l’école. L’absence d’eau pousse également les adultes à quitter leur famille chaque année pour aller chercher au-delà des frontières les ressources nécessaires à leur survie. Pourtant, cette région recouvre dans son sous-sol un lac aquifère de plusieurs milliers de kilomètres carrés. Or, il suffirait d’un forage pour apporter l’eau tant convoitée au centre du village et offrir à tous une vie meilleure.
Centre Culturel Franco-Manitobain
Cinémental – Festival de films francophones au Manitoba
About the director
English — Aïssa Maïga is a Senegalsese actress working in France. She was born in Dakar, Senegal, in 1975 to a Senegalese-Gambian mother and Malian father, an acclaimed journalist. She moved with her family to France when she was 4. She discovered her vocation as an actress in middle school, and won various professional roles while studying theater in high school. Her big screen début was in Saraka bô (1997), directed by Denis Amar.
Since then, Aïssa has worked with a number of internationally renowned directors, including Michel Gondry (in L’écume des jours (2013), Abderrahmane Sissako (in Bamako (2006)), and Michael Haneke (in Code inconnu (2000) and Caché (2005)). Throughout, Aïssa has continued to perform onstage in celebrated plays such as “Brooklyn Boy” (2004), “Les Grandes Personnes” (2011), and the French production of David Lindsay-Abaire’s “Good People” (2015).
Aïssa is at ease in a wide range of film roles, from African to young parishioner, aided by her fluency in multiple languages. She has won or been nominated for a number of prestigious prizes, including a Best Newcomer César (French Oscar) nomination in 2007 for Bamako (2006) and the Best Actress Prize in 2009 at the Bastia Film Festival for Bianco e nero (2008) by Italian director Cristina Comencini. She also won the Best Actress Prize in 2013 at the Luchon Film festival for her role in Denis Malleval’s Mortel été (2013), as well as the Crystal Globe for Best Actress in 2016 for her role in Prêt à tout (2014).
From comedic and dramatic roles to genre and action movies, from popular to art house films, Aïssa Maïga has become one of the unforgettable faces of international cinema.