The Mercy of the Jungle

Joël Karekezi
The Mercy of the Jungle
International feature film

Anteo – Sala Astra, 30-09-2018 19:30
Spazio Oberdan – Sala Alda Merini, 03-10-2018 16:30

Original Title
The Mercy of the Jungle

International Title
The Mercy of the Jungle

Joël Karekezi



Year of Production

Neon Rouge Production, Tact Production


During the Second Congo War (1998-2003), veteran Sergeant Xavier (Marc Zinga) and young and enthusiastic recruit Faustin (Stéphane Bak) are mistakenly left behind by their battalion. Left alone in the middle of the jungle, the two decide to set off, hoping they will soon reach their comrades. At first, being together is not easy, but along the way the two build a solid relationship of mutual understanding. Or don’t they? The second feature film by 32-year-old Rwandan director Joel Karekezi (also co-writer with Casey Schroen and Aurélien Bodinaux) after Imbabazi: The Pardon (2013), The Mercy of the Jungle is a cruel tale about male friendship – almost a wartime buddy movie, lit up by flashes of macabre humor. Animated by a strong moral tension coexisting with a sometimes hallucinated view of the horrors of war, the film recalls prominent literary precursors, from Jack London’s Love of Life to Ambrose Bierce’s Tales of Soldiers and Civilians. The result is an unusual and powerful synthesis which aims to shed light on a bloody and mostly unknown page of recent history, without the paternalism of some contemporary African films. (Gabriele Gimmelli)


Joël Karekezi
Joel Karekezi graduated in 2008 in film directing from Cinecours. In 2009 he directed his short film The Pardon by the support of Maisha Film Lab. The film won the Golden Impala Award at the Amakula Film Festival in Uganda and the Award for Best Short Film at the Silicon Valley African Film Festival in 2010. He received a development award from the Göteborg International Film Festival Fund for his first feature film Imbabazi: The Pardon, which screened in various festivals around the world, and won the NILE GRAND PRIZE 2014 at Luxor African Film Festival & Best Director at International Images Film Festival for Woman 2014. In 2012 his script The Mercy of the Jungle won the CFI Award for the Most Promising Audiovisual Project at Durban Filmart and the STEP development award at Luxor African Film Festival 2015 It was selected at Cannes – La Fabrique des cinemas du monde in 2013, Locarno Open Doors in 2014, Atelier Grand Nord in Quebec in 2015, Production Forum in Namur in 2015 et Rencontres de Coproduction Francophone in Paris in 2015.


Imbabazi: The Pardon 2013
Portrait of Reconciliation 2016
The Pardon 2009