Viva Riva!
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A small time hustler thinks he's got a big score ahead of him if he can stay out of the way of some underworld rivals in this stylish action drama from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Riva (Patsha Bay Mukana) is a guy who is smart, ambitious and willing to bend the rules, but he hasn't made much of a windfall from his talents until he discovers a secret stockpile of gasoline in Kinshasa. Fuel is hard to find, and Riva knows he can move the gas for a premium price, but he's not the only one who is looking to make some fast money off the petrol. Riva's main rival is Azor… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 85%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A slick, exciting, well-made crime thriller, dripping with atmosphere."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"Patsha Bay plays the macho title character, but the film belongs to sultry Manie Malone as the dancehall diva he aims to steal from the top mob boss. She makes even the act of applying lipstick spark with erotic electricity."
‑ Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"Meet Riva (the spectacular Patsha Bay), a man who thrives on scarcity: he smuggles gas, and has recently come upon a mother lode-which becomes, of course, a powder keg."
‑ Chris Chang, Film Comment Magazine
"Both exotic and engaging, with an earthy edge. But it also has a sophisticated side"
‑ Andrew L. Urban, Urban Cinefile
"A wild and seductive crime thriller, Viva Riva! is a promising early step for Congolese pulp cinema."
‑ Radheyan Simonpillai, NOW Toronto
"It feels so raw and urgent and real."
‑ Bruce Demara, Toronto Star
""Viva Riva!" has its cake and eats it, too. Shoots it to pieces, actually."
‑ Ty Burr, Boston Globe
"The alien environment makes Viva Riva! a fascinating watch."
‑ Dominic Corry,
"Worth checking out just based on the rarity of a movie with an empathetic black protagonist even being made about the Congo. The un-Tarzan!"
‑ Kam Williams, NewsBlaze
"Antoine Roch's digital photography is one of the film's strong points-it takes you right into the action from the opening scene..."
‑ Sarah Boslaugh, Playback:stl
"Pulsing with polyglot music and outlaw vigor, "Viva Riva!" is a raucous reply to the new world order."
‑ Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"The titular exclamation point promises exuberant fun that the movie delivers only in spots."
‑ Walter V. Addiego, San Francisco Chronicle
"The film looks and feels like another Pulp Fiction clone at times, but what emerges is a far more thoughtful work that makes important (and surprisingly) salient points about the humanistic struggles of developing countries."
‑ Simon Foster,
"What Munga has to say in this feature directorial debut is delivered via a quick-paced, gritty crime story that is both entertaining and enlightening."
‑ Liz Braun, Jam! Movies
"There's a ton of stuff going on in "Viva Riva!" but it's always willing to pause for a steamy sex scene."
‑ Chris Hewitt (St. Paul), St. Paul Pioneer Press
More reviews for Viva Riva! on Rotten Tomatoes