View Full Version : Gangster film,VIVA RIVA goes global, puts Congo on the Hollywood movie map

Pope Bitterz D'Alomo
18th July 2011, 04:03 PM
Click to Watch Interview with VIVA RIVA star,Hoji Fortuna (http://edition.cnn.com/2011/SHOWBIZ/Movies/06/22/viva.riva.fortuna.film/index.html)

A Congolese gangster drama is kick starting the war-torn country's movie business after operations shut down following decades of conflict.
It's the first movie produced in The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) for over 20 years and it's thrusting the central African nation into the spotlight for all the right reasons.
But not only is the feature film "Viva Riva" a milestone for the DRC, it's also won the newly created MTV award for Best African Movie, as well as a string of other awards at festivals from Berlin to Toronto.

The fast-paced crime story is set in the capital city of Kinshasa. It follows the adventures of a charming gangster, Riva, who's trying to make a living selling black-market gasoline and ends up falling for the local crime boss's girlfriend.
For one of the actors it was also a chance to return to Africa after fleeing civil war in neighboring Angola.
"It was special," said actor Hoji Fortuna. "It was very, very, very special. I, for the longest time, had issues about going back to Africa.
"I had a lot of traumatic situations over there. A lot of traumatic experiences that somehow were one of the reasons why I left the continent in the first place," he continued.

Fortuna left Angola in 1994 after being shaken by its conflict and the death of his mother. He moved to Portugal aged 20, and then to New York, where he landed the role of Cesar in Viva Riva, a smartly dressed foreigner who is also trying to make money in the capital's lawless streets..
Writer and director Djo Munga chose the plot line after meeting traders near the DRC/Angolan border who would go to great lengths to make money in the economically damaged country.
Critics have described the film as "gritty" and "real" and Fortuna says it really manages to capture the spirit of Kinshasa.

"It's visceral; it's a very strong film. I think it is very strong because it captures the energy of the place where it was shot. Kinshasa is a very strong place," he said.
Fortuna's role won him best supporting actor at the African Movie Academy Awards -- the "African Oscars" -- but he didn't always know he wanted to go into acting. Originally studying law at a university in Portugal he got his first chance to tread the boards at the age of 26 in an amateur college play.

He said: "The culture where I come from always goes in the sense where a guy has to take a more serious kind of professional approach.
"You have to either become a lawyer, or an engineer, or a doctor or something like that. Becoming an artist or a musician or an actor wasn't really an option."
Those behind the film hope its success will now spark a revival among the local movie business caught up in years of conflict and unrest.
"I think we are actually making history here," Fortuna said. "We have broken kind of the walls and allowing our films to be accessible to a wider audience."
"You know, the fact that the movie was picked up and distributed in the United States and most of the countries of the world are already a result of that. So, I think it can only bring good things for African cinema," he added.

For Fortuna, the film has also allowed him to return to Africa, and make peace with his home country.
"Viva Riva was actually the opportunity to do it," he said. "I am grateful that it happened that way; I felt that I was doing the right thing. You know, I felt like this is what I wanted to do."

Fashion Yaa
18th July 2011, 04:31 PM
dont miss the train...here are the viewing dates in actual movie theatres here in the states


July 22 GA Atlanta Midtown Art
MO St. Louis Tivoli Theatre
TN Nashville The Belcourt

July 29 PA Pittsburgh Harris Theater

August 19 IL Chicago Music Box Theatre


2011 MTV Movie Awards – Best African Film


Best Film
Best Director – Djo Tunda Wa Munga
Best Supporting Actor – Hoji Fortuna
Best Supporting Actress – Marlene Longange
Best Cinematography
Best Production Design
Official Selection – 2010 Toronto International Film Festival
Official Selection – 2011 Berlin International Film Festival
Official Selection – 2011 South By Southwest Film Festival
Winner – Best Feature Film – 2011 Pan African Film Festival
Press Reactions
“Four stars…One of the best neo-noirs from anywhere in recent memory.” – Eric Hynes, Time Out NY
“Frenetic, sleazy and entertaining as all hell.” – Alison Willmore, The Onion
“An exciting new filmmaking talent.” – Robert Abele, Los Angeles Times
Technical Information
Production Year2010
Release Date10 Jun 2011
Country of ProductionDemocratic Republic of Congo
LanguageLingala, French, ----- with English subtitles
Running Time96
Screen Ratio1.85:1
SoundDolby Digital
Official Site

YouTube trailer

Press Notes
Download a pdf of the Press Notes

Opens State City Theater Run

June 10 CA Los Angeles Nuart Theatre
NY New York Angelika NY
OR Portland Cinema 21

June 17 CA Culver City Culver Plaza
WA Seattle Varsity Seattle

June 24 - Washington D.C. E Street
CA Berkeley Shattuck
San Francisco Lumiere Theatre
PA Philadelphia Ritz Five

July 1 CA San Diego Ken Cinema
San Jose Camera 3
NM Albuquerque Guild Cinema
OR Portland Clinton Street

July 8 CO Denver Chez Artiste
MA Cambridge Kendall Square
MN Edina Edina Cinema

July 22 GA Atlanta Midtown Art
MO St. Louis Tivoli Theatre
TN Nashville The Belcourt

July 29 PA Pittsburgh Harris Theater

August 19 IL Chicago Music Box Theatre

18th July 2011, 06:28 PM
... ermm.... no online screening ....:)

18th July 2011, 08:05 PM
This looks very interesting and well made. I will check it out.