WHAT COMES FIRST COUNTRY OR FAMILY?
Boniface “Softie” 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. From the moment Boniface decides to run, telling his wife, Njeri, in passing with a hesitant laugh, he responds to each challenge with optimism. But running a clean campaign against corrupt opponents becomes increasingly harder to combat with idealism alone. And Boniface soon finds that challenging strong political dynasties is putting his family at risk. Should country really come before family, as he’s always believed?
Featuring Boniface Mwangi and Njeri Mwangi
Written and Directed by Sam Soko
Editors Mila Aung-Thwin Sam Soko Ryan Mullins Cinematographer Joel "Ingo" Ngui Sam Soko Chris Rhys Howarth
Additional cinematography Elijah Kanyi David Kariuki Vincent Muthini Pete Murimi Bruce Makau
Streeter Phillips James Quest Seydou Mukali Nick Wambugu
Sound recording Edwin Ahenda Brian Munene
Sound Design / Re-recording Mixer. Cory Rizos CAS Composers Olivier Alary Johannes Malfatti
Archive and Music Supervisor Edmund Duff Online Editing + Colour Hamed “Ed” Aleali Samantha Neboschizkij
Line Producers Ruth Munyiri Valerie Shamas Production Manager Matrid Nyagah Lola Karisa. Associate Producer. Katie McKay
Executive Producers Bob Moore Mila Aung-Thwin Sandra Whipham Marjon Javadi Justine Nagan Chris White Mandy Chang Jess Search Daniel Cross Bramwel Iro
Toni Kamau Sam Soko
"A marvel of narrative storytelling..."
"A compelling act of defiance"
"a powerful and personal election biopic... as intimate as it is brave"
The Film Stage
The Times (UK)
"..the global crisis has, in some ways, made the film’s message even more urgent and relevant, connected to a global, though also intensely local, struggle."
Africa is a Country
"We all make sacrifices for our dreams and ambitions, but it seems with Softie that some costs are too high to pay..."
Shadow and Act
"Top 10 best documentary bets for an unprecedented online film festival experience."."
The Globe and Mail
"...trying to change the world has deeply personal consequences."
Salt Lake City Weekly
The Scottish Mail
"Softie represents an important step forward because of who is telling the story."
"…a portrait of the kind of selfless, unifying and much-needed patriotism."
"...funny, suspenseful, and inspiring..."
"An unnerving cautionary tale..."
International Documentary Association (IDA)
An African story about an African protagonist told by an African director — and the world is watching
"A tense political thriller..."