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Soul Power (2008)

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A documentary on the legendary soul music concert staged in Kinshasa, Zaire in 1974.


(as Jeffrey Levy-Hinte)
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Credited cast:
Himself (archive footage)
Himself (archive footage)
Herself (archive footage)
Manu Dibango ...
Himself (archive footage)
Himself (archive footage)
Lola Love ...
Franco Luombo ...
Herself (archive footage)
Hugh Masekela ...
Sweet Charles Sherrill ...
Sister Sledge ...
Debbie Sledge ...


A documentary on the legendary soul music concert staged in Kinshasa, Zaire in 1974.

Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis


The greatest music festival that you have never seen.


Documentary | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements and brief strong language | See all certifications »





Release Date:

10 June 2009 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Soul Power  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$23,893 (USA) (10 July 2009)


$206,813 (USA) (13 November 2009)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


References When We Were Kings (1996) See more »


Cold Sweat
Written by James Bron and Alfred James Ellis
Performed by James Brown & the J.B.'s
Under license from Unichappell Music, Inc.
on behalf of Dynatone Publishing Co. (BMI)
See more »

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User Reviews

nice piece of history
18 February 2009 | by (one step beyond) – See all my reviews

This movie is a selection from many hours of footage produced before and during the music festival that was to accompany "The Rumble in the Jungle" - the heavyweight championship fight between Ali and Foreman in '74. The festival was meant to bring the American soul/r&b/funk/blues musicians "back home" to Africa and give them the opportunity to perform alongside African stars, such as Miriam Makeba. The movie is centered on James Brown, the main star of the three-day festival. It is more about the event as such, its "technical" background, than about schoolbook history. Even then, it leaves a lot of ambiguities open for the viewers to see. We hear Ali comment on the peaceful life Zairians lead while American blacks are ever threatened by accidents or (white) hatred. But this peaceful life is controlled by the government that urges the people to love their dictator. Although this movie doesn't deal with the political tensions involved in this Zairian sojourn, the implications are there. One thing that some viewers might not like is that "Soul Power" leaves little room for the African artists, focusing instead on the American greats like Brown or B.B. King. Another is that it's so short - King has only one feature, Brown has no more than three. At the Berlin IFF (Berlinale), the director (or editor, as the movie is simply made up of footage produced over 30 years ago) explained that he couldn't afford more than he did; also, some of the performances at the festival were of lower quality. As it is, the songs that we hear in "Soul Power" are beautifully shot - and finely recorded. At any rate, this movie is worth watching. It's interesting and it's funny. Go see for yourself!

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