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Category: Film

Benni’s broken angels

THE HORROR OF being a small child beset with enormous flaws is something that many a writer may attempt to portray because of the challenge of capturing its profound complexity that scoops up the contradictions of being human and holds it tight. Not every writer can succeed. Nor […]

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The woman of my life

THE INTERSECTION BETWEEN politics and love in life is fairly well-trodden filmic ground, ripe as it is for some of the most beautiful romances imaginable. It’s a ground fertile with issues of young love, utter devastation, twisted values and magnificent music. Pawel Pawlikowski’s Cold War touches all of […]

Pavarotti’s gift

THE TRUTH IS a strange thing in the film industry. All too often the disclaimer that a piece is ‘based on the unbelievable but true story’ is used in the marketing junket. Does it really matter? Does it work? Do people flock more to see a film that […]

I am my mother’s child

VERY RARELY DO you get a coming together of narrative values that are not only sensitive to the text that they honour, but also have the maturity and sense of purpose to create a filmic product that stands on its own creative feet. This is what happens in […]

Kofifi drenched in violence

REPLETE WITH ITS jazz dives, camaraderie and poetry, its dinginess, brothels and gangs Sophiatown aka Kofifi was a suburb in Johannesburg that was an apartheid loophole until 1955. It was the one place in which black people could live in relative harmony with people of all colours, free […]

Still Nouveau, but sexy

RECENTLY, THE CINEMA Nouveau complex at Rosebank Shopping Mall underwent a facelift. But this was no complicated structural reconfiguration. It looks, on a superficial level, almost the same, except for some nips and tucks and a bar which serves small meals around the corner. This is the wisdom […]

How to tell a story

THE WHIPLASH BRILLIANCE of Quentin Tarantino’s film Once upon a time … in Hollywood will leave you second guessing everything until the closing credits and then some; by and large, all of your predictions will be wrong. Constructed like a Greek tragedy, this essay on the faux realities […]

In love under a dangerous open sky

THE COMPLEX AND oft blood-stained plight of people with sexual proclivities that digress from hetero-norms has waxed and waned for centuries all over the world. Queer people have alternatively been persecuted, raped, murdered and deemed illegal in society, as they have been embraced and lionised, before the circle […]

No electricity here

PICTURE ALL THE ingredients for a fabulously good yarn: a great historical feud, complicated theories to explain, the sexy philosophical potency of the electric chair, complex social conditions and the unsophisticated medical savvy of the 19th century. There’s even a spot of Morse Code jokes in the mix, […]