‘Johnny Mad Dog’ brings Liberia’s child soldiers to fore

"Johnny Mad Dog", a film by Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire was shot in location in Liberia with former child soldiers. Violently realistic, the film portrays their cruel, everyday lives.


Screened among the ‘Un certain regard’ (A certain outlook) section of the Cannes Film Festival, Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire’s ‘Johnny Mad Dog’ is one of those rare films in competition that tackles the challenges facing the African continent.

Its extraordinary violence is even more attention-grabbing since the film sets out to truthfully describe the everyday reality of the child-soldier in Liberia.

The film’s producer (Mathieu Kassovitz) and director defend the graphic realism of their images, even if its violence is disturbing. The film was shot during the span of a year in which Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire lived in Liberia with the movie’s actors: former child-soldiers who endured and committed some of the worst atrocities.

Watch excerpts from the film and Elizabeth Tchoungui’s interview with Johnny Mad Dog’s director and producer by clicking on 'Play Video'.

Watch the entire show by clicking on "The Cannes Reports" in the right column.

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