Director Mohamed Lakhdar-Hamina / 1975 / Algeria

The winner of the Palme d’Or at the 1975 Cannes Film Festival – the first and only African film to have received the award – Mohammed Lakhdar-Hamina’s stirring, rarely seen epic is an essential big-screen experience.

Algeria’s late colonial history is filtered through the eyes of an impoverished farmer who, in the late 1930s, is forced to leave his drought-stricken land. As the years pass, he is caught in the thick of the Second World War, a typhoid outbreak and, eventually, the beginnings of the struggle for independence.

Chronicle of the Years of Embers is a work on an astonishingly ambitious scale, making use of vast landscapes and a multitude of extras – a high-water mark in Algerian, and African, cinema.

"Probably the only film that dwarfs the spectacle of David Lean’s Lawrence of Arabia … a film of matchless visual energy and formidable talent that demands to be seen once more in the world’s cinemas, as intended." – Bright Lights Film Journal

Contains footage of animal slaughter

Back To Index