West African drama 'The Pirogue' makes U.S. premiere at Film Forum (39686)
West African drama 'The Pirogue' makes U.S. premiere at Film Forum (39685)

Senegal, the West African nation on the Atlantic Ocean, was home to Africa’s greatest filmmaker, Ousmane Sembene. Today, Moussa Toure follows in the master’s footsteps with “The Pirogue,” a drama of 30 men (and one woman, a stowaway) who set out on an illegal seven-day voyage to Spain, making the perilous trip in a pirogue, a type of boat resembling a vastly oversized dinghy. While sharing a common desire to build a better future, these men hail from different ethnic and religious backgrounds.

Reinaldo Barroso-Spech, president of ArtMattan Productions, the film distribution company behind the release of “The Pirogue” in the United States, says, “This film represents everything we stand for: an African story told from an African perspective with a production value that rivals any good American production.”

Diarah N’Daw-Spech adds: “This film is so important for us because it humanizes the struggle of African immigrants. You are moved and feel like you understand better their struggles and aspirations after you see the film.”

“The Pirogue” was featured at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, in the Un Certain Regard section.

ArtMattan Productions (“Kirikou and the Sorceress,” “The Story of Lovers Rock,” “Congo: White King, Red Rubber, Black Death,” “Scheherazade, Tell Me a Story”) is pleased to present the U.S. theatrical premiere of “The Pirogue,” now running at Film Forum (209 W. Houston St., near Sixth Avenue) until Feb. 5 with screenings daily at 1, 2:50, 4:40, 6:30, 8:20 and 10:10 p.m.

For more information and tickets, please visit www.filmforum.org or www.AfricanFilm.com. You may also call 212-864-1760.