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Snake Dance

Manu Riche, Patrick Marnham
Belgium, Netherlands, Ireland 2012 / 77’

Even Werner Herzog would be proud of the deeply pessimistic voice of the narrator in Snake Dance. This peculiar documentary rejects the fair and balanced approach with a message temperature that rivals Michael Moore’s films. In a story of weapons that have enslaved humanity, the authors boldly experiment with perspective, offering three reviews of the achievements of the 20th century’s greatest scientific minds through the prism of the global consequences of the Manhattan Project. Science that kills spirituality, warn the filmmakers, destroys not only the enemy, but any society that comes in contact with it. The film takes audiences through the barren lands of Mexico, mines of the Congo and rubble of Japan while invoking a ‘butterfly effect’ to show superpower status as an epidemic with dramatic consequences.

Piotr Szcześniak

Manu Riche

Belgian documentary filmmaker born in 1964. He was an early contributor to the legendary documentary magazine Strip-Tease produced by Belgian TV channel RTBF. During the nineties he worked on several independent films. In 2003 he explored the relationship between fiction and documentary in two major films on Belgian personalities, King Baudouin I and Georges Simenon. He is the initiator, producer and director of Hoge Bomen, a series of portraits on formal and informal power in Belgium at the beginning of the 21st century.

Selected filmography

1991 Les aventures de la famille De Becker (doc., short)

1999 Welcome to My World (doc.)

2005 Steve Stevaert, de politicus (doc.)

2009 Tempo of a Restless Soul (co-dir., doc.)

2010 Can a Man Change the City (co-dir., doc.)

2012 Wężowy taniec / Snake Dance (co-dir., doc.)

Patrick Marnham

Born in 1943. He is an English journalist, biographer and writer of travel books. He is primarily known for his biographies, where he has covered subjects as diverse as Diego Rivera, Georges Simenon, Jean Moulin and Mary Wesley. As a journalist, he has written for The Times, Daily Telegraph, Guardian and The Observer among others. Snake Dance is his debut, as a director. His books have won the Thomas Cook Travel Book Award and the Marsh Biography Award.


2012 Wężowy taniec / Snake Dance (co-dir., doc.)

Prepared by: Piotr Szcześniak

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Cast & Crew

director Manu Riche, Patrick Marnham
screenplay Manu Riche, Patrick Marnham
cinematography Renaat Lambeets, Ross McDonnell
editing Michèle Hubinon
music Jun Kanno
sound Luc Cuveele, Paul Heymans
cast Patrick Marnham
producer Manu Riche, Geneviève de Bauw
production Riche, Riche & Riche BVBA, IDTV Docs, Soho Moon Pictures, Thank You & Good Night Productions, RYVA Films
sales Ananda Films
language English, French
colouration colour