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South African Filmmaking      Upcoming Film Releases      Reviews         At The Box Office

    Films Released in 2017    Top 20 Films of 2016   Top South African Films Of 2016      Top Films of 2015


Competitions

GUARDIANSWin a Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol.2 hamper that includes a Blu-Ray of Guardians of The Galaxy,  and awesome Mix Volume 2 – CD Soundtrack, and a Groot T-Shirt …

Reviews

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Charlie Hunnam in King Arthur: Legend Of The Sword

King Arthur: Legend Of The Sword is a hyperactive, story-less mess that ultimately has nothing by way of compelling narrative or interesting characters to offer …With Johnny Is Nie Dood Nie,  writer-director Christiaan Olwagen delivers a refreshing film that is as radical as the Voëlvry music movement that rebelled against the autocratic dictates of the apartheid government and changed the hearts of a generation of South Africans who wanted to break free from oppressive separatism.  It’s a film like Silence that showcases the transformative power of film, as well as the magical allure of the art of filmmaking at its best, and the craft of storytelling at its most powerful … Writer-director Tom Ford spins his magic in the provocative mind bender Nocturnal Animals … 


Films opening 26 May

pirates-5-first-look1PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: SALAZAR’S REVENGE  Thrust into an all-new adventure, a down-on-his-luck Capt. Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) finds the winds of ill-fortune blowing even more strongly when deadly ghost pirates led by his old nemesis, the terrifying Capt. Salazar, escape from the Devil’s Triangle, determined to kill every pirate at sea including him. Capt. Jack’s only hope of survival lies in seeking out the legendary Trident of Poseidon, a powerful artifact that bestows upon its possessor total control over the seas. Directed by Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg.  The story is by Jeff Nathanson and Terry Rossio, and Jeff Nathanson wrote the screenplay. Watch the trailer

Song To SonSONG TO SONG A new love story from filmmaker Terrence Malick (Knight Of Cups).  Set against and inspired by the Austin, Texas rock and roll scene, the film follows four interconnected lovers as they tumble and clash in both their roller coaster musical careers and rule-breaking intimate lives. Amid a world driven by youth, passion, lust, drugs and creativity, the story hones in on one couple who find in each other a way to bust through all the wild distractions of our modern lives and seek satisfaction in a new way.  Two entangled couples — struggling songwriters Faye (Rooney Mara) and BV (Ryan Gosling), and music mogul Cook (Michael Fassbender) and the waitress (Natalie Portman) whom he ensnares — chase success through a rock ‘n’ roll landscape of seduction and betrayal. It was filmed throughout Austin and at its world-famed music festivals by three-time Academy Award winner Emmanuel “Chivo” Lubezki. Though renowned for visually arresting storytelling, Malick has always been drawn to that most classic subject of all:  love – especially love that mirrors or cuts through life’s illusions.  Song To Song continues a career that began with the dark romance between two 1950s Midwestern killers on the run in Badlands; explored the early days of America through Captain Smith and Pocahontas’ affair in The New World; and twined the overwhelming emotions of parental love with a story of creation in The Tree Of LifeWatch the Trailer

unforgettableUNFORGETTABLE What lengths would you go to for love? For director/producer Denise Di Novi, that is the question at the heart of her new suspense thriller.Tessa Connover (Heigl) is barely coping with the end of her marriage when her ex-husband, David (Stults), becomes happily engaged to Julia Banks (Dawson)—not only bringing Julia into the home they once shared but also into the life of their daughter, Lily.  Trying to settle into her new life, Julia believes she has finally met the man of her dreams, the man who can help her put her own troubled past behind her.  But Tessa’s jealousy soon takes a pathological turn until she will stop at nothing to turn Julia’s dream into her ultimate nightmare. “The story intrigued me because it’s about two very different women thrown into a complicated blended family relationship.  They each feel tremendous pressure—one to create the perfect life, the other to hold on to it.  That pressure drives one to madness, while the other is forced to find the strength to fight for her life.  I thought that would make for a very intense thriller.” Watch the trailer

New releases

BOLSHOIA HERO OF OUR TIME This riveting new production from the Bolshoi Ballet company, seen for the first time in cinema, dances its way onto the Nouveau screens from Saturday, 13 May, for limited shows. Based on the larger-than-life hero, Pechorin. The ballet has been adapted from Russian Mikhail Lermontov’s literary masterpiece in three separate stories – Bela, Taman and Princess Mary, that each recount his heart-breaking betrayals. Is Pechorin a real hero, or is he just a man like any other?  Read more /  Trailer

Alien-Covenant-Trailer-Breakdown-59ALIEN: COVENANT In space, no one can hear you scream. After nearly four decades, those words remain synonymous with the sheer, relentless intensity of Ridley Scott’s masterpiece of futuristic horror, Alien. Now, the father of the iconic franchise returns once more to the world he created to explore its darkest corners with Alien: Covenant, a pulse-pounding new adventure that pushes the boundaries of R-rated terror. Set ten years after the events depicted in Scott’s 2012 hit Prometheus, Alien: Covenant returns to the roots of the director’s groundbreaking saga with a uniquely terrifying tale filled with white-knuckle adventure and monstrous new creatures. With this, the sixth installment in the blockbuster series, the visionary director edges ever closer toward revealing the mysterious origins of the mother of all aliens, the lethal Xenomorph from the original film. Directed by Ridley Scott and written by John Logan. Read more about the film /  Watch The Trailer

beyond-the-riverBEYOND THE RIVER Two men from vastly different walks of life have one thing in common: to win gold. But there are a few things in their way. One has a marriage on the verge of collapse. The other is on the run from the law, and his so-called life. Then there’s the minor detail of them never before having competed as a team… Somewhere along the river of their lives, there’s a confluence that changes both of them – forever. Through a series of unexpected events, the two men find themselves attempting the three-day Dusi Canoe Marathon as a doubles pair. But there are a few things they must overcome, not least of which are the completely different worlds they come from. They realise that the dream they both desperately desire requires them to work together, both in the boat and beyond the river. Inspired by the true story of Siseko Ntondini and Piers Cruickshanks, who together won gold in the 2014 Dusi, Beyond the River delivers a nail-biting adventure story about the triumph of the human spirit. Starrring Lemogang Tsipa and Grant Swanby.  Directed by Craig Freimond and written by Freimond and Robbie Thorpe. Freimond: “The film is quite different. I can’t think of too many films like it. It’s got a feel-good side to it,but it has also got a lot of depth. People who’ve seen it have responded to the story, the film itself, the actors, the landscapes. People will enjoy this movie.” Watch Trailer

BYPASS In the children’s ward of St Luke’s Hospital, Sam Cooper (Joel Brown) is waiting at the top of the transplant list for a new liver. His mother, Dr. Lisa Cooper, (Natalie Becker) head of cardiac surgery, feels completely helpless, unable to save her son, despite saving her patients’ lives every single day.  When a liver finally becomes available and is destroyed en route to the hospital, the alternative of sourcing an illegal organ becomes her only option.  Knowing that in order to harvest a heart and perform the transplant, she will need to take the life of a young, innocent girl to get Sam back, she is faced with the devastating reality that some lives may simply be more valuable than others. Screenplay by Shane Vermooten and Bianca Schmitz, directed by Shane Vermooten. Visit Website / Trailer

THE CURIOUS WORLD OF HIERONYMUS BOSCH The next art documentary in the Exhibition on Screen season uncovers the fascinating world of medieval Dutch artist, Hieronymus Bosch. After 500 years, Bosch’s paintings still shock and fascinate us, and this Exhibition on Screen documentary delves into the vivid imagination of this true visionary. Read more  / Trailer

DIARY OF A WIMPY KID: THE LONG HAUL The film takes place one year after the events of Dog Days, Greg convinces his family to go on a road trip for his grandmother’s 90th birthday, but he actually intends attending a convention. Read more about the film / Watch the trailer

EUGENE ONEGIN Soprano Anna Netrebko reprises one of her most acclaimed roles as Tatiana, the naïve heroine of Tchaikovsky’s opera, which the composer adapted from Pushkin’s classic verse novel. Peter Mattei stars opposite her as the self-confident title character, Eugene Onegin, who rejects Tatiana’s love until it’s too late. Read more

the-founder-movie-2016-trailer-michael-keatonTHE FOUNDER The true story of how Ray Kroc (Michael Keaton), a struggling salesman from Illinois, met Mac (John Carroll Lynch) and Dick McDonald (Nick Offerman), who were running a burger operation in 1950s Southern California. Kroc was impressed by the brothers’ speedy system of making the food and saw franchise potential. Kroc soon manoeuvres himself into a position to be able to pull the company from the brothers and create a multi-billion dollar empire. Directed by John Lee Hancock and written by Robert Siegel. Read more about the film / Watch the trailer

guardiansGUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2  Picking up where “Guardians of the Galaxy”—2014’s highest grossing film of the summer—left off, Marvel Studios’ “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” continues the action-packed, irreverent, epic space adventures of Peter Quill aka Star-Lord and his gang of eccentric characters as they patrol and protect the universe, doing mercenary work in the wake of the popularity and fame they garnered from saving Xandar.  Old foes become new allies and fan-favorite characters from the classic comics will come to our heroes’ aid as the Marvel Cinematic Universe continues to expand. Written and directed by James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy, Dawn of the Dead):  “It was truly gratifying and fulfilling that the Guardians’ characters spoke so profoundly to so many people all over the world,” says Gunn.  Feature: From Comic Book To Box-Office Hit: Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol.2 / Trailer

HALF GIRLFRIEND This story is a coming-of-age romance between a vernacular Bihari Boy – Madhav Jha, who falls in love with an upper class “Delhi high-society” girl – Riya Somani. On the outside, the two of them have nothing in common, but love blossoms in the most unexpected way when Madhav starts to woo Riya. An Indian romantic drama based on the novel of the same name written by Chetan Bhagat. The film is directed by Mohit Suri. Read more about the film / Watch the trailer

JOHNNY IS NIE DOOD NIE  It’s 2002. Four friends are having a braai on the Sunday after Johannes Kerkorrel’s suicide. They reminisce about their days as students in Stellenbosch during the time of the Voëlvry tour in the late 80’s. They were young, drunken rebels saturated in the protest music of Kerkorrel, Koos Kombuis and Bernoldus Niemand. Now, they have become disillusioned suburbanites. The death of their varsity friend Johnny remains a mystery and still haunts all four of them, even after all these years. Johnny is nie dood nie examines the impact of the Voëlvry movement on the personal and political development of a generation of Afrikaners, as well as the havoc the Bush War inflicted on the lives of thousands of young army conscripts. Read Review  / Trailer

KING ARTHUR: LEGEND OF THE SWORD Acclaimed filmmaker Guy Ritchie brings his dynamic style to the epic fantasy action adventure starring Charlie Hunnam in the title role. The film is an iconoclastic take on the classic Excalibur myth, tracing Arthur’s journey from the streets to the throne. The young Arthur runs the back passages of Londinium with his crew, not knowing his royal lineage until he draws the sword Excalibur from the stone. Instantly confronted by the sword’s influence, Arthur is forced to decide where to become involved with his power. Throwing in with the Resistance and an enigmatic young woman named Guinevere, he must learn to master the sword, face down his demons and unite the people to defeat the tyrant Vortigern — who murdered his parents and stole his crown — and become king. Read interview with director and co-writer Guy Ritchie / Review/  Watch trailer

OZZY The idyllic life of Ozzy, a lovable, placid beagle who has always been pampered, is about to be turned upside down. When his family, Susan, Ted and their daughter Paula, can’t take him on a long trip away from home, they leave him in what seems to be the best canine spa, Blue Creek. But the place’s perfect appearance turns out to be a façade concocted by its villainous owner, Mr. Robbins. Ozzy will soon discover that Blue Creek is, in reality, a jail for dogs, inhabited mainly by tough street mongrels and where it’s a case of survival of the fittest. Once inside there, Ozzy will have to avoid danger, find strength where he didn’t think he had any and learn to rely on Chester, Fronky and Doc, his new friends who will accompany him on this adventure as he tries to get back home safe and sound. Read more about the film / Watch the trailer

THE RESURRECTION OF GAVIN STONE Former child star Gavin Stone (Brett Dalton) must perform 200 hours of community service after trashing a hotel in his Illinois hometown. Temptation strikes when Stone learns that the church he’s assigned to clean is staging a lavish religious production. After landing the lead role of Jesus Christ, Gavin finds himself drawn to the show’s director (Anjelah Johnson-Reyes), a young woman who also happens to be the daughter of the affable pastor (D.B. Sweeney). Read more about the film.  Watch the trailer

RULES DON’T APPLY An aspiring young actress (Lily Collins) and her ambitious young driver (Alden Ehrenreich) struggle hopefully with the absurd eccentricities of the wildly unpredictable billionaire Howard Hughes (Warren Beatty) for whom they work. It’s Hollywood, 1958. Small town beauty queen, songwriter, and devout Baptist virgin Marla Mabrey (Collins), under contract to the infamous Howard Hughes (Beatty), arrives in Los Angeles. At the airport, she meets her driver Frank Forbes (Ehrenreich), who is engaged to be married to his 7th grade sweetheart and is a deeply religious Methodist. Their instant attraction not only puts their religious convictions to the test, but also defies Hughes’ #1 rule: no employee is allowed to have any relationship whatsoever with a contract actress. Hughes’ behavior intersects with Marla and Frank in very separate and unexpected ways, and as they are drawn deeper into his bizarre world, their values are challenged and their lives are changed.Says writer-director Warren Beatty, who admits to a long-time amusement with Hughes: “He could do whatever he wanted to do but there was a certain level of Puritanism that he never quite kicked…” Feature: Writer-Director Warren Beatty’s Rules Don’t Apply Is An Unconventional Comedy / Trailer

THE SALESMAN This characteristically taut drama explores how unexpected cracks can form in the foundations of a seemingly happy marriage. In The Salesman, the future looks promising for amateur actors Emad (Shahab Hosseini), a teacher, and his wife Rana (Taraneh Alidoosti), as they prepare for opening night on their production of Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman. However, when dangerous work on a neighbouring building forces the couple to leave their home and move into a new apartment, a case of mistaken identity sees a shocking and violent incident throw their lives into turmoil. What follows is a series of wrong turns that creates a simmering tension between husband and wife that threatens to destroy their relationship irreparably. Farhadi’s study on the potent power of pride, guilt and shame treads the line between arresting drama and revenge thriller with masterful ease. Directed by Asghar Farhadi, The Salesman won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film at this year’s Oscars, in addition to awards for Best Screenplay and Best Actor at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival. This is the second Academy Award win for Farhadi, who won it previously for A Separation in 2012. Read more about the film / Trailer

20TH CENTURY WOMEN Writer-director Mike Mills (the Academy Award-winning Beginners) brings us a richly multilayered, funny, heart-stirring celebration of the complexities of women, family, time and the connections we search for our whole lives. It is a film that keeps redefining itself as it goes along, shifting with its characters as they navigate the pivotal summer of 1979. Set in Santa Barbara, the film follows Dorothea Fields (Annette Bening), a determined single mother in her mid-50s who is raising her adolescent son, Jamie (newcomer Lucas Jade Zumann, in a breakout performance) at a moment brimming with cultural change and rebellion. Dorothea enlists the help of two younger women in Jamie’s upbringing – via Abbie (Greta Gerwig), a free-spirited punk artist living as a boarder in the Fields’ home, and Julie (Elle Fanning), a savvy and provocative teenage neighbor. Watch trailer

THE WARRIOR’S GATE An action-packed adventure film with martial arts derring-do, seen through the eyes of a Gen Z video gamer and set to a hip-hop breakdance beat. Jack Bronson (Uriah Shelton) lives in a part-time virtual world.  Cowardly Jack must learn to face his fears, conquer an unknown universe, become a skilled warrior and save both the princess and her kingdom. Only then will he be able to return home and meet the challenges of his own contemporary world. Watch trailer