Presented by MIFF
Tori and Lokita
Tori et Lokita
Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne present another heartbreaking, empathetic tale from the margins of Belgium’s underclass, which won Cannes’ special 75th Anniversary Prize.
Sweet-natured Tori and staunch Lokita are child refugees, eager to make Belgium their home after a long and traumatic journey from West Africa. Lacking the necessary papers, they must convince the authorities that they are blood relatives who are ‘worthy’ of remaining in the country, but it won’t be easy. In an attempt to gain false documents, Lokita finds work at a drug dealer’s grow house; separated for the first time, the pair scrounge to survive and do everything they can to be together again.
After four decades of transformative social-realist cinema, double Palme d’Or winners the Dardenne brothers (Young Ahmed, MIFF 2019; The Kid With the Bike, MIFF 2011; The Child, MIFF 2005) have done it again – this time with a plaintive and potent dramatisation of the personal fallout of the refugee crisis. With Tori and Lokita, which is driven by the moving performances of non-professional actors Pablo Schils and Mbundu Joely, they turn their focus on the strength required for such brave individuals to make a new life, and to do so with dignity and respect in the face of society’s mounting failings.
A scalding indictment of societal indifference … Like the best of their work, its premise pulls tighter until even the simplest actions are endowed with breathless intensity.
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