A Short (Cool) History of South African Cinema

African Cinema

+ During the 1910s and 1920s, many South African films were made in or around Durban. These films often made use of the dramatic scenery available in rural KwaZulu-Natal, particularly the Drakensberg region.

+ KwaZulu-Natal was also served as the appropriate location for historical films such as De Voortrekkers (1916) and The Symbol of Sacrifice (1918)

African Cinema

Sarie Marais, the first Afrikaans-language sound film, was released in 1931. Subsequent sound releases such as Die Wildsboudjie(1948), a 1949 Sarie Marais remake, and Daar doer in die bosveld (1950) continued to cater primarily to white, Afrikaans-speaking audiences.

+ The 1950s saw an increased use of South African locations and talent by international filmmakers. British co-productions like Coast of Skeletons (1956) and American co-productions like The Cape Town Affair (1957) reflected the a growing trend of shooting in real locations, rather than using backlots.

African Cinema

Uthemba

Uthemba South African Cinema
KEY CREW & CAST
Director Rudi Mayer Cast Lucas Tsiane
Producer Rudi Mayer Muntu Ndebele
Writer Rudi Mayer Aaron Mbuli
DOP Rudi Mayer Danney Maphalala
Editor N/A Anton Sibanda
Sound Frank Muller Jerry Ndabukelwayo
Y.O.P 1980’s Patrick Ntuli
Running Time 93 min Josef Mualefe
Language isiZulu Mandy Kunene
Genre Crime / Drama Patricia Mothibedi
SYNOPSIS

Themba is released from serving two years in prison for his best friend, Vusi. Upon his release, he discovers that Vusi, the car thief, has been sleeping with his girlfriend, Thandi. Themba decides to change his fate and become a snitch – helping the police put an end to Vusi’s on-going crime spree. Vusi has Thandi executed, blaming her for his current misfortunes. Themba moves the final chess piece into place, resulting in Vusi’s ultimate demise and capture.

Uthemba South African Cinema

Uthemba South African Cinema

Upondo No Nkinsela

Upondo No Nkinsela South African Cinema

KEY CREW & CAST
Director Bernard Buys Cast Ndaba Mhlongo
Producer United Films Masoja Mota
Writer Bernard Buys Joe Mafela
DOP Ivo Pelligrini
Editor N/A
Sound N/A
Y.O.P 1980’s
Running Time 49 min
Language isiZulu
Genre Comedy
SYNOPSIS

Pondo and Nkinsela are two haphazard, dysfunctional friends. They end up going on a series of crazy adventures together which cause havoc everywhere they go. From ruining a bride’s wedding day to destroying a client’s hairdo in a beauty salon to escaping a supposed ghost in a house, the two friends always seem to come out on top.

Upondo No Nkinsela South African Cinema

Upondo No Nkinsela South African Cinema

 

Hostage

Hostage South African Cinema
KEY CREW & CAST
Director Michele Hartslief Cast Innocent “Popo” Gumede
Producer Mitch Dyter Dumi Shongwe
Writer Lorraine Philbrick Pepsi Mabizela
DOP Michele Hartslief Vincent Vilakazi
Editor Theresa Brown Zanele Nyidi
Sound Simon Bleakley Sylvia Makhathini
Y.O.P 1980’s
Running Time 69 min
Language isiZulu
Genre Crime / Drama
SYNOPSIS

Bra Jack and his two underlings, Jabu and Thabi, decide to blackmail a young local businessman by the name of Ben. Their plan is to use one of his warehouses at the harbour to store a shipment of drugs coming in soon.

Ben, proving himself an upstanding citizen, refuses to cooperate. This is until his wife, Thuli, is kidnapped by the crooks.

Ben turns to his friend, Michael, who helps the young man come up with a plan to rescue his wife. At a trade-off at the harbour, one of the underlings is shot. Jack and his concubine manage to escape but ultimately Ben is reunited with his wife once more.

Hostage South African Cinema

Hostage South African Cinema