It’s Complicated

{Ïn} a world where dramas, soapies and tele-novellas are rife Mzansi Magic’s new drama series, It’s Complicated holds its own turf. It is gripping, fun’ and thought provocative. By the way it is not a youth drama. Actually, it is the stuff of adults, which makes its positioning within the prime time zone allocated to it somewhat tricky considering its content. Were the steamy scenes of the recent Generations – The Legacy and Rhythm city paving a way towards a door step shy away for South African Television Production Houses to flirt with adult content at the time where the kids are still up? This is a moral topic reserved for a moral sermon leagues away in the future especially if you are thirsty for something new and you are huddled at home on a Friday evening with no kids around

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Things are about to get interestingly pristine

Mzanzi Magic HD

{Ïn} the modern fireplace story telling lore there is a period of high intensity activity when viewers’ attention is lobbied in all directions to consume television content ranging from actuality, current affairs, dramas and soapies. Recently, in South Africa, this period has seen a hyped up high intensity activity of attention seeking television content being rolled out in a generous scale, that is if you care about television. This is prime time television and to television channels whippers it is an important block in two respects. On the one hand the block is important because it is a lucrative slot for running commercials because around this time a lot of people are home and watching television. You just have to think about the various rancid funerals, life covers and investment policies being advertised between 18:00 – 22:00 time slot to acknowledge this. On the other hand the block is important for the television channels due to the expensive tariffs they charge to advertisers during this period. It is not a Milky Way phenomena thing that the channels need the money, so it has been reasoned, to give us quality programming.

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Film Review: The Haunted Wardrobe!

(♦♦♦−−)

{HERE} are moments in this film where the viewer may be jolted out of their stupor if not a comfortable couch. This is a paranormal outing and the film has a few surprises up its sleeve. What are the chances of two studs ending up sharing a house with a gorgeous roommate when they need a third tenant to split the rent with? Unfortunately a hideous wardrobe will see to it that there is no peace and harmony in the ‘big house’. You can think of the wardrobe as a fourth tenant because besides it being at the center of the story it is a catalyst that leads to catastrophic events as the motion picture narrative unfolds.

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Film Review: Kwaito or Nothing

(♦♦♦−−)

{I} could not help it but think of Zulu Boy while watching this flick. Menzi Biyela cuts his teeth deeper into a fully fledged film. Unlike the Capfin advertisements he is synonymous known for here his acting talent surfaces. He stars as Mondli the taxi driver from Umlazi. He is brought to Gauteng by Baba Tshabalala a.k.a Mshengo (Emmanuel Nkosi) to work for him in the city with the last of his taxi’s

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Film Review: My Brother’s Keeper

Nomelezi V. Ntshimba as Tshepo and Miranda Mokhele as Dimakatso in Lehlohonolo ‘Shaft’ Moropane's My Brother's Keeper (2014)

Nomelezi V. Ntshimba as Tshepo and Miranda Mokhele Ntshangase as Dimakatso in Lehlohonolo ‘Shaft’ Moropane’s My Brother’s Keeper (2014)

{If} you are going to make a film about a narrative whose juice has been exhaustively squeezed to the point of dry bone snap you will be a miracle worker to find anything new to say. Lehlohonolo ‘Shaft’ Moropane’s My Brother’s Keeper (2014) is one such a film. It’s a love tragedy. Is there anything that anyone can do with this theme? This is an attempt. I invite you to be the judge

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Film Review: The Gift

Thembi Seete as Bontle Shona Ferguson as Thabiso in The Gift. Image source, http://citizen.co.za/wp-content/uploads/sites/18/2014/11/Page1A_2-599x400.jpg

Thembi Seete as Bontle Shona Ferguson as Thabiso in The Gift. Image source, http://citizen.co.za/wp-content/uploads/sites/18/2014/11/Page1A_2-599×400.jpg

FOR the most part, our society, through the family as its nucleus, pretends that everything is ok while secretly suppressing the nature of reality as is. The family is caught up by a yearning for opulence as a mark of prestige and progress or the wish itself to have more, by far and large the in-escapable feature of modernity. Often awesomely this situation, the acquisition of material comfort that is, is erected to the ire of those closer to home, our family members. If it does not breed jealousy that drives a wedge between siblings it draws us together artificially due to the material benefit boons it heralds

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dEF’Rating: The Gift

Thembi Seete as Bontle Shona Ferguson as Thabiso in The Gift. Image source, http://citizen.co.za/wp-content/uploads/sites/18/2014/11/Page1A_2-599x400.jpg

Thembi Seete as Bontle Shona Ferguson as Thabiso in The Gift. Image source, http://citizen.co.za/wp-content/uploads/sites/18/2014/11/Page1A_2-599×400.jpg

The Gift continues the Ferguson’s crusade on their close scrutiny of our contemporary South African family when it is pitted against the demands and expectations of the world’s prying eyes. We’ve seen this concern in their telle novella, The Wild and their consistent drama series’ offering Rockville. The present work is shot with the same camera work intimacy characteristic of Rockville and the invasion of privacy approach or allow me to refine an expression I have used just now – ‘prying eyes perspective’ that has become characteristic of their work signature. There are moments you feel like you’re eaves dropping on what is being said or spying on what is happening when you view their work. While this film’s narrative is unoriginal, it is the flair with which perspective is given to the cracks of Motaung’s family as an organism that propels the film to stand its own ground in the annals of South African films; the work is freshen up in the way the cracks themselves are revealed and teased out from unexplored perspective. This perspective is the very deep seated conviction on how one sees and locate themselves within the family nucleus. The Ferguson’s The Gift delivers an interesting 4dEF’Points out of Five: ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ /

Autumn

 

26 April

© Mmutle Arthur Kgokong 2015

mmutleak@gmail.com

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dEF’Rating: The World’s End

A hilarious science fiction film. A bunch of friends on a pub crawl down memory lane realises that an alien race has taken over their home town. If you can just get over the first 20 minutes or so of the film while the context is being set you’ll laugh your way through the rest of this witty in your face jokes film with a an original plot that keeps swelling to a thicket of surprises that defies second guessing. Phew I almost lost me breath. The World’s End gives a mighty hard snot klap of {5dEF’Points out of 5:*****}¶

Autumn

2 April

© mmutle athur kgokong 2015

Brenda Ngxoli

There is a scene in the last episode of the season finale of Rockville S3, Episode 13 (Ferguson Films), Lindi (Mbali Mlotshwa) and Gladys (Brenda Ngxoli) are at the Clinic for Lindi’s abortion. Brenda Ngxoli gives a powerful performance as she lets her skeletons out that she aborted a baby during her teens and as a result she can’t conceive. Her barrenness, which in hindsight, it is suggested, she brought unto herself was a source of ridicule in the community and would later cause her to lose her marriage as she trotted along through life keeping the secret to her husband that she aborted a baby during her teens. As she relates this darker chapter of her life you can’t help it but be moved. It is Gladys the loose woman, the drunkard, who speaks here, however as much as the viewer may think ill of her that, ke le kgawate, unable to hold on to other people’s secret. You will feel for her. For her human condition is brought to the spotlight for our scrutiny. Overarchingly, the viewer will find and feel an ounce of sympathy go towards these troubled women as tears roll down their cheeks drenching the hospital’s floor. But, from a performance text perspective, the solicited sympathy will linger a little a while on Gladys for as long a time as the scene persists due to the pain that has reared forward within her character and insist on staying in the midst of the event of this series’ episode. Such are the acting prowess of Brenda Ngxoli. Err, the Fergusons, he e, he e, he e, he e, he e; he e man (I almost said – go monate go ba wena); mara you get my drift. We look forward to the next season already.¶

1 April

Autumn

© mmutle arthur Kgokong 2015

Masasa Mbangeni

 

In the ‘Soapie Universe’ jiti ke gore we are yet to come across a female character who does not have to be devious to get our attention. So le wete le, Masasa Mbangeni (Thembeka Shezi on Scandal!), does a good job of making sure she does not live up to her name; she won the outstanding lead actress award at the Royal Soapie Awards. 5dEF’Points out of 5.

30 March

© mmutle arthur kgokong 2015