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Aesshaek, Tales from the Sahara (Aesshaek, Geschichte aus der Sahara)

Aesshaek, Tales from the Sahara
Scene from "Aesshaek, Tales from the Sahara" (photo © Ulrike Koch/Pio Corradi)

The eagerly awaited second feature from the director of Saltmen of Tibet explores the lives of the desert Tuaregs with a similar natural intimacy and breath-taking imagery.

One man's search for his lost camel becomes the narrative thread. The Tuareg Noehi travels through different landscapes, meets different characters: a Marabout at his hidden mosque, a young girl awakening to become a Targia, a radiant and strong Turaeg woman. His journey is also used to evoke the Tuareg myth of a city of wonders beyond the dunes, and in his sleep he dreams of the animals that once lived in the desert and have now disappeared.


Ulrike Koch was born near Birkenfeld and studied Chinese and Japanese in Zurich, followed by studies in Chinese Literature and Philosophy in Beijing. Her films include Traditional Medicine in Asia: Qigong in China (1996), The Saltmen of Tibet (1997), and Aesshaek, Tales from the Sahara (2004).
Genre Culture
Category Documentary
Year of Production 2004
Director Ulrike Koch
Screenplay Ulrike Koch
Cinematography Pio Corradi
Magdolna Rokob
Harry De Witt
Producers Karl Baumgartner, Alfi Sinniger, Ernst Szebedits
Production Company Catpics/Zurich, in co-production with Neue Pegasos Film/Frankfurt
Length 110 min
Format 35 mm, color
Original Version
 Tamashek
Subtitled Version English
Sound Technology Dolby
Festivals Rotterdam 2004, Philadelphia 2004, Locarno 2004, Denver 2004, Turin 2004, Festival du Nouveau Cinema Montreal 2004, Seattle 2004, Jerusalem 2004, Mexico City 2005
Awards Best Documentary Montreal 2004

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