Le jeune Karl Marx

The Young Karl Marx | Der junge Karl Marx
1844. Karl Marx is 26 years old and living with his wife Jenny in exile in Paris. He is habitually in debt and plagued by existential anxieties. When he first meets the slightly younger factory owner’s son Friedrich Engels he dismisses him as a dandy. But Engels, who has just published a study on the miserable impoverishment of the English proletariat, has long since begun to distance himself from his own class. The two like-minded men become friends and soon inspire each other to write texts in which they seek to provide a theoretical foundation for the revolution they believe must come. Their goal is no longer to merely interpret the world, but to change it. Fundamentally. Resistance on the part of conservative forces and internal power struggles within the political Left only serve to spur them on.
Raoul Peck describes the origins of the international Socialist movement, the emergence of the Communist League and its founding document, the Communist Manifesto. At the same time, the film paints a portrait of two impetuous young men who passionately believe in the vision of a humane society and the revolutionary power of the abused and oppressed.
by Raoul Peck
with August Diehl, Stefan Konarske, Vicky Krieps, Olivier Gourmet, Michael Brandner, Alexander Scheer, Hannah Steele, Niels Bruno Schmidt
France / Germany / Belgium 2017 French, German, English 112’ Colour Rating R12


  • August Diehl (Karl Marx)
  • Stefan Konarske (Friedrich Engels)
  • Vicky Krieps (Jenny Marx)
  • Olivier Gourmet (Pierre Proudhon)
  • Michael Brandner (Joseph Moll)
  • Alexander Scheer (Wilhelm Weitling)
  • Hannah Steele (Mary Burns)
  • Niels Bruno Schmidt (Karl Grün)


Director Raoul Peck
Screenplay Pascal Bonitzer, Raoul Peck
Cinematography Kolja Brandt
Editing Frédérique Broos
Music Alexei Aigui
Sound Jörg Theil, Benoît Biral
Art Director Benoît Barouh
Costumes Paule Mangenot
Make-Up Anne Moralis
Casting Sylvie Brocheré
Producers Nicolas Blanc, Rémi Grellety, Robert Guédiguian, Raoul Peck
Co-Producers Benny Drechsel, Karsten Stöter, Patrick Quintet
Co-Production Rohfilm GmbH Berlin
Artémis Productions Brüssel

Raoul Peck

Born in 1953 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. He trained as an industrial engineer and studied film. His international breakthrough came in 1991 with the documentary Lumumba: La mort du prophète. From 1996 to 1997, Peck served as Haiti’s Minister of Culture. He has screened films at the Berlinale several times, most recently both I Am Not Your Negro and Le jeune Karl Marx in 2017.


1985 Merry Christmas Deutschland oder Vorlesung zur Geschichtstheorie II 1988 Haitian Corner 1991 Lumumba: La mort du prophète (Lumumba – Death of a Prophet); documentary 1993 L’homme sur les quais (The Man by the Shore) 1994 Desounen: Dialogue with Death; documentary · Haiti – Le silence des chiens (Haiti, Silence of the Dogs); documentary 2000 Lumumba 2001 Profit & Nothing But! Or Impolite Thoughts on the Class Struggle; documentary 2005 Sometimes in April 2009 Moloch Tropical; IFB Berlinale Special 2012 Assistance mortelle (Fatal Assistance); documentary 2014 Meurtre à Pacot (Murder in Pacot); IFB Panorama 2016 I Am Not Your Negro; documentary 2017 Le jeune Karl Marx (The Young Karl Marx)

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2022