Fiche Film
LONG Métrage | 2008
Episode 3 -‘Enjoy Poverty’
Titre original : Aproveite a pobreza
Pays concerné : République démocratique du Congo
Durée : 90 minutes
Genre : politique
Type : documentaire


Réal : Renzo Martens
Hollande, 2008, documentaire, couleur, vidéo, 1h30 min


In Episode 3 -‘Enjoy Poverty’ by Dutch artist Renzo Martens, Martens investigates the emotional and economic value of Africa’s most significant export product: filmed poverty.
The film reveals that, as with other raw materials such as cocoa and gold, the suppliers of poverty,, that is, the poor being filmed and photographed, hardly profit at all from the huge amounts of money made from their imagery. In response, the filmmaker launches an emancipation programme in which he makes Congo’s poor aware of their primary capital resource.

For two years, Dutch artist Renzo Martens traveled around Congo, from the capital of Kinshasa to deep into the interior. Employing a casual film style, camera in hand, he roves through the poverty-fighting industry in the post-civil war country and regularly appears onscreen himself. He films UN peacekeepers in their SUV’s supporting an international company to exploit a gold; corpses of gold-digging rebels, surrounded by Western photographers, white relief workers happily photographing the recipients of their emergency aid, with their logo on every canvas tent they hand out; a large landowner at a photo exhibition looking at pictures of his day labourers, who don’t even earn enough to feed their children. It all amounts to one conclusion: poverty is there to stay, and’fighting it’ is an industry of which the poor benefit very little. Martens then launches a self styled emancipation programme: he teaches the Congolese poor that’images of poverty’ are their countries most lucrative natural resources. Under Martens’ guidance, local photographers start photographing malnourished children instead of wedding parties. He mounts a neon sign in the middle of the forest that reads « Enjoy Poverty », so that the poor too could reap its financial fruits. The local populations dance frenetically, but in the end, adversities rise all over again.

Renzo Martens, The Netherlands, 2008, colour, video, 90 min

Director: Renzo Martens
Photography: Renzo Martens
Screenplay: Renzo Martens
Editing: Jan de Coster

Peter Krüger for Inti Films,
Renzo Martens for Renzo Martens Menselijke Activiteiten

World Sales: Autlook Filmsales
Screening copy: Renzo Martens Menselijke Activiteiten

Involved TV Channel
YLE, Lichtpunt, VPRO

Sales Contact
Susanne Guggenberger for Autlook Filmsales,
Renzo Martens for Renzo Martens Menselijke Activiteiten

Co-producent: Peter Krüger for Inti Films
Festival Handling: Peter Krüger for Inti Films


Durante dois anos, o diretor viajou pelo Congo, desvendando a indústria da luta contra a pobreza no país pós-guerra civil. Sua conclusão: a pobreza veio para ficar, e « combatê-la » é uma indústria que em nada beneficia os pobres.

(Documentário, 90 min., Holanda, 2008)
Direção: Renzo Martens

Selecionado para a abertura de Amsterdam International Documentary Festival.

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