Berlinale: Programme

Film file


Tough Bond

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Many street kids come from drought-plagued villages where young people have no future. They hang out in the cities, surviving by trawling through rubbish looking for things to sell for a few cents, or eating leftovers picked out of the garbage with their hungry fingers. Sometimes they enjoy dancing about and being silly, or hanging out at the disco. Wherever they go they always carry a little plastic bottle which they keep pressed to their noses. The bottle contains Tough Bond – a brand of glue found in many African countries. This helps them cope with their hardships. When you're high you don't notice hunger, the cold, or your pain. This unflinching documentary takes a look at the lives of Kenya's lost youth. Sticking close to their protagonists, the directors create a respectful portrait of a group of youngsters who share the fate of so many Africans. Many of them are kids with no one to care for them. This wasn't always the case: in the old days, traditional village or neighbourhood communities would share responsibility for the children. But today, everyone has to fend for themselves. Politicians are in denial about the problem and there is little room for hope.

USA 2012, 83 min


Austin Peck, Anneliese Vandenberg