Our Best Posts of 2014

Our Best Posts Roundup

Over the past 12 months we’ve used ourselves as guinea pigs in a new realm. We’ve worked to see whether it’s the old or new films from South African history which inspire you, we’ve learned how to debut our films abroad, and we’ve found better ways to work, write and create.

The process has been enlightening, productive and ultimately just a lot of fun.

With the new year now in full swing, we’ve put away our holiday overindulgences to take time to reflect on some of our favourite (and most popular) articles of 2014:

Framegrabs of “Trompie”

Silwerskerm Film Festival

Isiboshwa

Interview with Tonie Van Der Merwe

On CNBC

Revenge

Revenge South African Cinema

KEY CREW & CAST
Director Coenie Dippenaar Cast Alex Ngubane
Producer Coenie Dippenaar Roy Dlamini
Writer N/A Fikile Majola
DOP Tonie van der Merwe Vusi Gudazi
Editor Robert Thorpe Emmanuel Shangasi
Sound Foxy Hand Peter Bengu
Y.O.P approx. 1986 Fikile Majozi
Running Time 55 min Temba Shamba
Language isiZulu Abraham Foot
Genre Western
SYNOPSIS

In the old African Wild West, a peace-loving family man moves to a vacant farm in search of a new life. His hopes are shattered when his son is badly beaten and his wife is murdered by a gang of ruthless thugs.

He is left bloody in the dirt until fate finally intervenes. Rescued and nursed back to health by a good samaritan living alone in the hills, something is amiss. The hermit is soon revealed to be a reformed gangster – a deadly gunslinger who eventually trains the man and sets him on a path of preparation to exact his revenge upon his wife’s murderers.

Revenge South African Cinema

Revenge South African Cinema

Gone Crazy

Gone Crazy South African Cinema

KEY CREW & CAST
Director Tony Cunningham Cast Emmanuel Shangase
Producer Mitch Dyter Roy Dlamini
Writer Lorraine Philbrick Pepsi Mabizela
DOP Tony Cunningham Mandla Ngconya
Editor Craig van der Westhuizen Hector Mathanda
Sound Simon Bleakley Vincent Vilakazi
Y.O.P 1980’s
Running Time 74 min
Language isiZulu
Genre Crime / Suspense
SYNOPSIS

When a psychopath seeking revenge on the Mayor of a small town steals a mega bomb from a local research facility, two police Inspectors will have to team up together. Both working different angles of the same case, they have to rescue a Professor kidnapped by the madman, and also stop his evil plan of blowing up a nearby dam in order to flood the town where everyone lives.

Gone Crazy South African Cinema

Gone Crazy-10

Isiboshwa

Isiboshwa South African Films

This 70 minute adventure film was shot in 1989. Produced by Steve Hand and Directed by Tonie vd Merwe, it stars Sizwe Dlamini, Popo Gumede and Hector Mathanda. Catch it on SABC1 this Sunday at 8:30pm as part of the Mayibuye Film Festival!

TAGLINE

While on a camping trip, three teenage brothers go from being the hunted to the hunters in an effort to snare and catch a dangerous thief.

SYNOPSIS

The summer holidays finally arrive, and the three teenage brothers head out into the wilderness for a camping trip together. Their days are spent fishing, swimming and relaxing by their small tent on the banks of the river.

But unbeknownst to the boys, they are being watched. When things start going missing from their camp, and other strange events begin to occur, the three brothers begin to worry, unsure and unaware of who or what is stalking them.

Eventually they manage to discover what is really happening, and together they set out on a path fraught with danger, action and drama in order to bring the culprit to justice.

 DIGITALLY REMASTERED BY:

Gravel Road Entertainment

Bona Manzi

BonaManzi South African Films

Starring Sipho Menyeni, Martin Potgieter, John Mtsali and Sithembiso Fusa, this 70 minute action film was shot in 1989. It was produced by Oubaas Olivier and directed by Tonie vd Merwe.

TAGLINE

A game ranger and his chief ranger set out on a daring rescue mission when his two nephews are kidnapped by dangerous poachers deep in the African bush.

SYNOPSIS

Two young brothers travel out to the countryside to visit with their game ranger uncle during their school holidays.

It is here on the ranch, under their uncle’s teachings, that they learn about the beauties of the African bush and the wildlife living there.

One morning the two boys head out alone into the wilderness to go explore and accidentally stumble across a group of poachers. The boys are kidnapped and it is left to the uncle and the Chief Ranger to set out on a daring and dangerous rescue mission to save the children and apprehend the poachers.

Bonamanzi South African Films

Ezintandaneni

Ezintandaneni South African Films

Produced in 1987, this 70 minute drama was directed by Tonie vd Merwe and produced by Oubaas Olivier. The cast includes Sizwe Dlamini, Popo Gumede & Gugu Mhlanga. Be sure to watch it this Sunday night on SABC1!

TAGLINE

A moving tale involving two orphans, a widower and a beautiful social worker, and how their lives all come together at the end.

SYNOPSIS

A touching story of two families – one poor, and the other rich. A young boy and his sister, raised by their cruel and vicious stepmother, live poor and difficult lives. Beaten and starved by their stepmom, the two children only have one another for comfort
and support. Meanwhile a prominent business man, and single father, has brought his mother to stay with him to help care for his ailing daughter. A beautiful Social Worker enters the scene and befriends the two abused children, and when the wealthy business man’s daughter sadly passes away, a series of events begin to unfold, entwining  these people’s fates and bringing all them all together at the end.

Ezintandaneni South African Films

Ambushed

Ambushed South African Films

Filmed in 1988 on 16mm, this 70 minute action film will keep you on your toes! Directed by Tonie vd Merwe and produced by Oubaas Olivier, the cast includes Hector Mathanda, Popo Gumede, Kay Magubane & Ngebo Zungo. Catch it on Sunday night at 8:30pm on SABC1

TAGLINE:

A young Game Ranger will have to track a dangerous group of army deserters in a desperate attempt to rescue his kidnapped wife and son.

SYNOPSIS:

A young Game Ranger lives with his wife and son a large game farm bordering a neighbouring country.

Early one morning, only a few kilometres away, a gang of army deserters cross the border to loot, steal and poach whatever they can find. As the Ranger bids his family farewell and heads out on patrol, his son leaves for school.

While on his way, the young boy has a run-in with one of the deserters. He manages to escape, or so he thinks, and flees back home. The boy informs his mother of the events, and together they try to reach the Ranger via radio. But the deserters have followed the boy home.

Mother and son are kidnapped and the gang of deserters head back across the border. The father, calling in his Assistant Ranger, tracks the gang through the treacherous landscape back to their hidden base. The odds are stacked against him, but it is here that he launches a desperate attack on the hide-out in an effort to defeat the gang and rescue his wife and son.

Ambushed South African Films

We Bring You The Mayibuye Film Festival, Launching on SABC Sunday 13th

Mayibuye-Festival-Poster

The Mayibuye Film Festival launches on SABC 1 in South Africa this weekend on Sunday! Running for 3 weeks from April 13-27, watch two never-before-seen South African films every Sunday night on SABC1. Films that were lost for 20 years have now been restored by Gravel Road Entertainment in Cape Town. Working out of the Waterfront Film Studios, we are digitally restoring these magical films from the 70’s & 80’s. In partnership with Wabona, one of Africa’s premiere video streaming services, the public will also be able to stream the films through Wabona’s online website (http://wabona.com/) or through their cellphones via applications such as Mxit, thanks to Cinemo (Wabona’s mobile service). The films will also be running on TV screens in mini bus taxis via “Commuter TV”.

Retro Afrika