Imagine waking up one day in a barren wasteland. Amnesia leaves you clueless as to your whereabouts, your identity, and how you arrived. A small group of strangers welcomes you to a nearby oasis resort, and they reveal to you the nature of this new reality. You are dead. And this is the afterlife. This is what happens to Kaleche (Nyokabi Gethaiga) in the enigmatic opening sequence of Kati Kati, writer-director Mbithi Masya's poetic first feature film. Kaleche is a new arrival with no recollection of her life or death. A dozen other young Kenyans are all caught in the same eerie dormant state. They want for nothing; they simply write down whatever their heart desires and it appears at their bedside the next morning. The group's unofficial leader is Thoma (Elsaphan Njora), who is passionate about helping the dead remember and reconcile with their fragmented pasts. But Kaleche's presence triggers a transformation in Thoma. Their mutual enchantment with each other unearths a sinister secret of his, forcing him to confront his own denial and pain. Kati Kati was directed by Mbithi Masya.

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Critic Reviews (7)

Weighted Avg. Adjusted by the addition of a statistical value.
Critic Score Distribution
Highest score:
Lowest score:
Average score:
  1. Positive: 6 Out of 7
  1. Mixed: 1 Out of 7
  1. Negative: 0 Out of 7
Critical Consensus: Good.

Daily Nation

05 Oct 2017
"The 70 or so minutes present an outstandingly done film driven by a well-written script, talented cast and apt direction. Simple, well contrived effects build up the plot, surreptitiously moving every scene." ...

The Hollywood Reporter

01 Jan 2017
Expanding on his producing role on 2012’s Nairobi Half Life, director Tom Tykwer assists Kenyan filmmaker Mbithi Masya on his debut feature, an offbeat drama set somewhere in the afterlife. Winner of the FIPRESCI international film critics’ award ...

Cinema Scope

01 Jan 2017
A genuinely surprising film from an unexpected source, Kati Kati is a film that draws on tradition (Nollywood, Senegalese counter-cinema, faith-based films) without falling into the stylistic or genre traps of any of those approaches. The plot is bas ...

Whats on Africa

01 Jan 2017
Moving and enigmatic, Kati Kati flits between the eerie and the stylish as it meditates on life and death, guilt and shame. Kenyan director and co-writer Mbithi Masya makes his feature-length debut, screened for the first time in the UK at the Royal ...

Film Dispenser

01 Jan 2017
The debut feature from Mbithi Masya Kati Kati is a look at the afterlife with the same sort of refreshing grace that Albert Brooks approached the same ground in Defending Your Life. Masya’s fim has a more dramatic point of view than Brooks’ comed ...

The Playlist

01 Jan 2017
Think of Kenyan filmmaker Mbithi Masya’s “Kati Kati” as a condensed version of “Lost,” in which the characters are all aware that they’re dead from the outset and it only takes one hour for the principals to face their own mortality. Mayb ...

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Release Date:

September 10th, 2016 (Toronto International Film Festival, Canada)


Andrew Dru Mungai


Mbithi Masya, Mugambi Nthiga


Louizah Wanjiku

Production Designer:

Emmanuel Mrabu


Ali Abdallah, Grishon Onyango


Sean Peevers, Ibrahim Sidede, Just A Band

Original Score:

Sean Peevers, Ibrahim Sidede, Just A Band

Production Company:

One Fine Day Films GmbH, Ginger Ink Films


Wolf Consultants


Swahili, English


75 minutes

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