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Kano 'Trouble' by Aneil Karia

Ned Botwood - 24th July 2019

Aniel Karia directs this challenging short film, based on a concept by Kano, in which a promising teenager is stabbed. The London MC searches for sense and reason in this conversation with his neighbourhood.

We meet the teenager (Nat) and his family in a warm, naturalistic vignette, loosely scored by the calm gospel lilt of Trouble. Karia lets us bask in this domestic calm just long enough to lull us into a sense of security. Which he interrupts with a tragic two minutes of iPhone footage, captured by friends and a bystander. On the way to buy rice for his mother, Nat gets caught in the middle of a violent conflict. The moment, over which we can hear a woman describing the event to the police, bears a troubling resemblance to real videos captured by witnesses and shared on the news.

There’s a pause for the funeral. And then a raucous wake, guest starring Ghetts, at which Kano is cheerfully hounded into performing his new track Class of Deja.

Karia (previously of the series Top Boy and Pure) presents the aftermath of violence with a light, even-handed touch. He and Kano address the cycle of knife crime, but avoid moralistic sensationalism: “I ain’t trying to be no preacher man” says boy’s uncle, speaking at his funeral. A pensive optimism courses through the film, but quiet details - Nat’s sister, bedroom and keyboard - remind us what is at stake. This is a powerful, timely piece of work, and a defining opus for Kano.

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Ned Botwood - 24th July 2019


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Aneil Karia
Precious Mahaga
Production Company
Executive Producer
Saskia Whinney
Production Manager
Clio Mccleary
Production Manager
Anna Saffrey


Director of Photography
Stuart Bentley


Jodie-simone Howe


Lucy Berry
Editing company
Final Cut


Simone Grattarola


Post production company
Time Based Arts
Post Producer
Nikki Porter

Ned Botwood - 24th July 2019

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