Deep into another world.
One hot afternoon Sean Kernan wandered into the Kampala Boxing Club in Uganda — for no good reason. He knew nothing about boxing and honestly didn’t really care.
But this was another world...so naturally he hung out there for the next seven years, returning again and again to film a deep dive into the far-off world of big-city boxers in Africa, with all of its passion, humanity, and ferocious focus.
What he brought back with him is The Kampala Boxing Club, a meditation on the violence, the surprising beauty and the heart of the fight game as it is played on that continent.
The film challenges any conceptions we might have with a view of what it actually is, so alive and demanding, so alien. Long hours honing the mind and body, then expending all that training in a few three-minute rounds, offering honor to the opponent who is trying to beat you; these are experiences that almost none of us will ever have.
Kampala Boxing Club is a surprising look at fighting and what lies beyond it. It invites you to see the heart and humanity and the beauty in boxing. The chance is rare. Take it!
As Joyce Carol Oates wrote in her book, On Boxing, “Life is, in so many unsettling respects, like boxing, but boxing…is only like boxing.”
The complete film is below.
Welcome to the club!
Beauty and Heart—big-city boxing in Africa