The Last Shelter

Le dernier refuge

  • Ousmane Samassekou
  • France, Mali, South Africa
  • 2021
  • 86 min
  • Dutch Premiere
  • Best of Fests

Hope and disillusionment meet at the Maison du Migrant on the southern edge of the Sahara. It is a stopping place for migrants headed for Algeria with Europe as their final goal, but also a shelter for those forced to turn back because of bandits or police. Esther and Kadi, two determined teenage girls from Burkina Faso on their way north, find warmth and friendship, as well as warnings of the dangerous journey through the desert.

A rich palette of observations immerses us in this small community, with a focus on the humanity that brings everything movingly close. Intimate portraits and frank confessions about dreams and trauma, pride and shame, trust and deceit are framed by telling images of a nearby graveyard and the silent, ominous desert. Meanwhile, Esther and Kadi have to make a decision.

Samassekou ends his film, developed during the IDFA Summer School and the IDFAcademy and awarded the Dox:Award at CPH:DOX, with a personal note: “In memory of my uncle Amadou, who left 32 years ago without leaving a trace.”


  • 86 min
  • color
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: Moré, Bambara, French, English
  • Subtitles in: English
Ousmane Samassekou
Estelle Robin You / Point du Jour - Les films du Balibari
Andrey Samoute Diarra / DS Productions, Don Edkins / STEPS, Tiny Mungwe / STEPS
Ousmane Samassekou
Céline Ducreux

IDFA history

Dutch Premiere
Best of Fests
Supported with €40000 for Europe: International Co-production
Supported with €5000 for Classic: Development
IDFAcademy Summer School Script
Round Table Pitch

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IDFA history

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