Soundtrack to a Coup d'État

Soundtrack to a Coup d'État

26th TIDF: European Premiere

Nothing less than a masterfully structured film essay, filmmaker and multimedia artist Johan Grimonprez’s (Double Take) new documentary is an explosive cocktail of geopolitics, jazz music, cold-war intrigues, and colonization practices, having Congo and the murder of Patrice Lumumba, its first democratically elected prime minister, as its backdrop. Both exhaustingly detailed in its research and data, and absolutely ingenious and free in its format, the film follows Lumumba’s rise to power and the colonialists’ resistance to releasing control of the country into the hands of its citizens. Simultaneously, the film chronicles the USA’s attempt to influence the country through dispatched jazz musicians such as Nina Simone, Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong who found themselves in the country in order to play music, ignorant to the fact that they were nothing more than a diversion for CIA’s machinations. The outcome is a film vibrating with music and cinematic energy while embodying an intense political “J’accuse” towards the ghosts of colonization that still refuse to be put down.

Screening Schedule

No physical screenings scheduled.

Direction: Johan Grimonprez
Script: Johan Grimonprez
Editing: Rik Chaubet
Sound: Ranko Pauković
Production: Onomatopee Films, Warboys Films
Producers: Daan Milius, Rémi Grellety
Co-production: Zap-O-Matik, BALDR Film, ZKM, Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe, RTBF Television Belge & VRT
Co-producers: Katja Draaijer, Frank Hoeve
Format: DCP
Color: Colour and B&W
Production Country: Belgium, France, The Netherlands
Production Year: 2024
Duration: 150'
Contact: Mediawan Rights

Johan Grimonprez


2009 Double Take
2012 ...Because Superglue Is Forever! (short)
2016 Shadow World
2017 Blue Orchids
2018 Three Thoughts on Terror (short)
2024 Soundtrack to a Coup d’Etat