The Mercy of the Jungle Film
Joël Karekezi | Democratic Republic of Congo/Belgium/France 2018 | French and Swahili with English subtitles | 1h31m | 15
Kivu is the borderland where the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda meet. It is here, in a dense network of forests and hills, that Rwandan director Joël Karekezi’s engrossing second feature unfolds. Set in 1998, shortly after the start of the Second Congo War, The Mercy of the Jungle follows a pair of lost Rwandan soldiers as they navigate the wilderness and confront their own existential crises. Sergeant Xavier and Private Faustin are accidentally left behind when the battalion races out to chase fleeing rebels. The two form a strong camaraderie as they navigate their survival in the jungle, relying on each other’s skill sets in order to survive. The Mercy of the Jungle won the first prize at the FESPACO film festival in Burkina Faso in 2019 and its inclusion in the festival commemorates 25 years since the Rwandan genocide.
The screening is generously supported by the Centre of African Studies at the University of Edinburgh.