What a beautiful movie from Burkina Faso, Yaaba (1989) directed by Idrissa Ouedraogo tells a beautiful tale of a friendship between two young boys in a village hamlet and an gnarling wizened old woman Sana (Fatimata Sanga) who has been accused of witchcraft by the villagers and stays away from the village. The two boys, both cousins, Bila (Noufou Ouedraogo) and Nopoko (Roukietou Barry) become fond of Sana whom they called as Yaaba in their language. Its a mud thatched village of little means and no medical comforts to talk about, a tough life in a tough environment. The villagers wear torn clothes and have little by way of occupation. There is constant friction in the village and everything is heaped on Sana. When Nopoko gets injured in a scuffle with other young kids of the village there is no health care centre to go to, so the villagers blame Sana for the calamity yet she offers to cure the kid which they initially refuse and then take it. Idrissa has crafted a masterpiece with his brilliant direction and story line. The cinematography by Mathias Kallin is breathtaking. In the sparse surroundings he has created a beauty. I could not understand a word of the dialogues spoken because there were no English sub titles yet the language is so sweet and soft. Normally i don’t watch a movie if there is no English sub titles in it, but something about this movie enraptured me in the first few scenes itself. For true movie connoisseurs this is a beautiful movie.

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