Kenya: Boniface Mwangi's Movie 'Softie' to Premiere in Sundance Film Festival

23 January 2020

Boniface Mwangi is the subject of a new independent film set to premiere at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival in New York on Saturday.

The 96 minutes film dubbed Softie - after his childhood nickname - sheds light on the lesser known struggles and accomplishments of the sociopolitical activist.

POLITICAL OFFICE

The movie's synopsis, describes Mwangi as daring and audacious, and recognized as Kenya's most provocative photojournalist.

But as a father of three young children, these qualities create tremendous turmoil between him and his wife Njeri.

In the movie, Mwangi has long fought injustices in his country as a political activist. Now he's taking the next step by running for office in a regional Kenyan election.

But running a clean campaign against corrupt opponents proves hard to combat with idealism alone.

And Mwangi soon finds out that challenging strong political dynasties is putting his family at risk.

Should country really come before family, as he has always believed?

His moments with Njeri and their children will deepen the viewers' understanding of the aspiring elected official, offering introspective respites from the turbulent pace of the campaign.

PUSH FOR CHANGE

Though set against the backdrop of a country in transition, Softie goes beyond politics to reveal what fuels one activist's need to push for change.

The director of the movie, Sam Soko, captures a charming idealist's transformation through his grassroots campaign, while exploring the complexities of balancing Mwangi's deep love of country with the needs of his family.

Mwangi ran for the Starehe parliamentary seat during the 2017 General Elections under Ukweli Party but lost to musician-turned-politician Charles 'Jaguar' Kanyi.

Sundance Film Festival's annual program includes dramatic and documentary features and short films - series and episodic content - as well as showcasing emerging media in the form of multimedia installations, performances and films.

It also hosts daily filmmaker conversations, panel discussions and live music events.

Since 1985, hundreds of films that have launched at the festival have gained critical recognition and acclaim, reaching new audiences worldwide.

The 2020 Sundance Film Festival will take place from January 23 to February 2, 2020.

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