"Nayola," a beautiful and visceral animated film, jumps between two timelines.
In 1995, Nayola is on a seemingly impossible mission to find her husband.
In 2011, the energy is completely different.
There's a vibrancy in the air but a significant police presence keeps any real joy under the surface.
"Nayola" is consistently beautiful, but suffers from an over-commitment to artistry over developing its story.
An extended sequence in the middle of the film in black-and-white feels like an opportunity to make the film longer.
Thankfully, even when things slow down, the animation is constantly wonderful.
In the 1995 timeline, it's the horrors of war and the fear of being under attack, and the desperate fight for survival.
The 2011 timeline explores the generational impact and collective trauma of war.
"Nayola" celebrates the passion and culture of Angola in the face of difficult situations.
The film is deeply rooted in the history of the Angolan people but accessible to those unfamiliar.
It's a moving portrait of the weight war carries on people decades after the dust has settled.
Thus film rating is 8 out of 10