The movie

Banel & Adama (English subs)

Banel & Adama showcases the mythic love between the eponymous couple in a remote Senegalese village, but it is the conjunction in the title that is at the heart of this scorching romantic drama. “Without Adama, you’re nothing”, quips Banel’s brother.

Length: 87 min
Country: Frankrijk, Senegal
Language spoken: Pulaar
Language subtitles: Nederlands
Cast: Mamadou Diallo, Khady Mane
Director: Ramata-Toulaye Sy
Release date: 14/03/2024


Adama has turned down his hereditary right to be the village chief, content instead to live in marital bliss with Banel. Together, they work at unearthing a house buried in sand outside the village, hoping to carve out a private niche away from this community where everything unfolds in public spaces. However this spirit of independence won’t be easily tolerated, and the village is soon visited upon by a deadly drought, severely straining the bond between the lovers.

As Banel, Khady Mane traverses the terrains of infatuation, determination, obsession and guilt with conviction and an almost evangelical fervour. Her emotional capacities grow as the film itself expands from a gentle ode to teenage romance to an operatic saga of divine tribulations. Through her persistence, Banel & Adama unveils a star-crossed love story of Biblical proportions.