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Softie

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭   Read critic reviews

Kenya
·
2020

1h 32m

Director Sam Soko
Starring Boniface Mwangi, Njeri Mwangi

Genre Documentary

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This documentary follows Boniface "Softie" Mwangi, a former photojournalist known for capturing images of the 2007-2008 Kenyan crisis, who has decided to run for office. He struggles to balance his family life, where he and his wife are raising three children, with the demands and risks of politics.

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WHAT ARE CRITICS SAYING?

80

Los Angeles Times by Carlos Aguilar

For Mwangi, Softie serves as testament of the domesticity he’s been absent from to satisfy the demands of his thankless vocation. But for the rest of us, it stands as a portrait of the kind of selfless, unifying and much-needed patriotism, from both Mwangi and Njeri, that could enact improvement if more subscribed to it wholeheartedly.
80

Variety by Guy Lodge

Softie clearly sees a beam of long-term hope for Kenya’s future in Mwangi and his political allies — including his no-bull, vinegar-tongued campaign manager Khadija, as delicious a documentary scene-stealer as we’ve seen this year. Yet Soko doesn’t go in for easy, crowd-pleasing uplift.
75

The Film Stage by John Fink

The film is unafraid of showing the real costs of political corruption from blood running in the streets to direct bribery at the polling stations on the day of the election. As intimate as it is brave, Softie is vivid warning and not an easy film to shake.
88

RogerEbert.com by Monica Castillo

The film is just as much about politics as it is a family working out the demands of a politically active life with the demands of the home.
50

The New York Times by Nicolas Rapold

Soko gets credit for not softening Mwangi’s landing, and the outcome of the election is dropped as nearly an afterthought to his valiant efforts. But the on-the-ground campaigning and complex history could use a better shape than the film’s fits and starts.