AFF 2008 Reviews

Les Ninjas Du Japon

D: Giovanni Giommi

Les Ninjas du Japon is about a team of Japanese cyclists in Africa, in much the same way that the Tour de France is about sightseeing in the Alps and Pyrenees while tooling around on a bike. From the film's opening shot, writer/director Giommi is far more interested in what happens in the foreground and behind the action at the Tour du Faso as opposed to the race itself. With inspired assistance from cinematographer Bruno Pappalettera and editor Fabio Capalbo, Giommi explores cultural disparities and meeting points when a semipro cycling team from Asia enters the 20th edition of Africa's largest bicycle stage race. Through a series of arresting miniaturist images, Giommi uncovers layers of meaning, political and human, in a sporting event that, though modest, draws competitors from around the world to one of the world's poorest and unstable nations.

Les Ninjas du Japon won the Best Documentary Feature award.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More by John Davidson
Book Review
My Father's Tears and Other Stories
The title story of this posthumous publication is brilliant and moving, a master class in narrative concision

June 19, 2009

New In Print
New In Print
A new collection from one of our most fearless writers

March 20, 2009

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle