Bangui, Central African Republic. Seventeen-year-old Robert would like to pursue a career in music despite his father’s objection. Robert, however, is not Central African like the other students: he is a Congolese refugee. When the Central African Republic plunged into crisis and saw clashes between militias at the end of 2013, Robert’s parents decided to flee the country. They obtained fake passports but were caught at the border. Both were sentenced to imprisonment.
Left alone with four younger siblings aged between three and eleven, Robert has to work non-stop to feed them and has no time to prepare for his baccalaureate. As playing in concerts pays well, against all odds music may help Robert save his family. A big contest is coming up at the stadium and a substantial cheque awaits the winner. Robert will have to fight on all fronts if he is to achieve first place.
Mahongo Films (Central African Republic)
Vicky Nelson Wackoro
Kiripi Films (DRC)
I was born in a country at war, the Congo, and arrived in the Central African Republic (CAR) when I was still a small child. I consider the CAR my country: it is where I grew up, where I have my friends and my daily life. And yet, it is not my country: I am not a citizen. I am a refugee. I want to make this film to tell my story to everyone; to tell what it is like to be a young refugee in CAR. I want to tell what it is like to be sixteen years old and have to take care of your brothers and sisters alone after your parents have been unjustly thrown into prison. These painful memories gnawed at me for years; even today, our situation is unresolved. I want to bring a message of hope to all my refugee brothers and sisters around the world: We can make it.
Born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 1997, Albert Fariala Alolea arrived at a very young age in the Central African Republic, where his parents had taken refuge because of the war. In 2013, he launched a musical career, and recorded several tracks. In 2018 and 2019, he took a film training course at Ateliers Varan in Bangui, after which he directed his first feature-length documentary, We, Students! (2022). The film was selected for the Panorama section of the Berlin International Film Festival before winning numerous awards at film festivals worldwide.
Vicky Nelson Wackoro was born in the Central African Republic in 1999. He produced the short fiction films Zoe by Carmelle Netto and Onze Carats by Carlos Ndjioro as part of the CinéBangui training programme in 2021. In April 2022, he participated in the Yaounde Film Lab with Emmanuella Lalangua’s feature-length fiction project Voundou and, in September 2022, he presented Rafiki Fariala’s feature-length fiction film Congo Boy at the Ouaga Film Lab. He is a producer, alongside Daniele Incalcaterra and Boris Lojkine, of the feature-length documentary Le Fardeau by Elvis Sabin Ngaïbino for Makongo Films.
October - November 2023, Bangui (DRC)
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