top of page


This Belgian movie is well-intended but director Ngangi Mutiri’s lack of experience results in a picture that fails to resonate.

There is no denying that Juwaa, the feature debut of Belgian director Ngangi Mutiri, is filled with plenty of good intentions to highlight hidden traumas within the Congolese diaspora in the country.

Focusing on a young adult who reconnects with his mother in Brussels, over a decade after a horrific night in Congo changed the course of their lives forever, Juwaa has a surprisingly light touch as the film only sporadically lets the underlying trauma bubble to the surface, but therein lies the picture's main flaw.

Themes like violence, cultural identity and fraught family bonds hardly resonate at all, while the main character arc is so slight you'd struggle to fill a short film with it, let alone a 90-minute movie. That director Mutiri has big trouble finding a coherent tone for the picture is compounded by an prevalence of close-ups, muddling the narrative, and an overall lack of maturity as both a filmmaker and a storyteller.

In short, while Juwaa puts the Congolese diaspora front and centre, it hardly does right by their tales and experiences.

release: 2022

director: Nganji Mutiri

starring: Babetido Sadjo, Edson Anibal, Gilles Remiche, Egon Di Mateo


bottom of page