What Was Happening When

1980 – Run For Your Life

While out on a cross-country run in unfamiliar territory, two friends  stumble upon an illegal drug operation in the woods. Soon taken hostage by the notorious drug-lord, they face the threat of becoming drug slaves themselves. Forced to work the plantation for the man known as “Cobra”, the two friends will have to rely on one another and use their wits if they wish to defeat the armed guards holding them captive.

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January

14 – The local community at Soekmekaar resists forced removal and damages the police station.

March

12 – The Nederduits Gereformeerde Kerk (NGK) together with its sister churches for Blacks (the NGK in Afrika), Coloureds (the NG Sendingkerk) and Indians (the Reformed Church in Africa), issue a statement that the Churches will bring no objection in principle should authorities judge that circumstances justify reconsideration of the Immorality Act and the Mixed Marriages Act.

April

4 – Umkhonto we Sizwe attacks the Booysens Police Station in Johannesburg with grenades, rocket launchers and AK47s.

May

2 – Pink Floyd’s Another Brick in the Wall is banned because the government fears that it might be used as a song of liberty by black school children.

June

1 – Bombs explode at Sasol One and Two and Natref Eight at Sasolburg and Secunda, with no injuries and RM58 damage. The attack was organised by Solomon Mahlangu of the Umkhonto weSizwe Special Operations.

August

Special Branch policeman Detective-Sergeant T.G. Zondi is shot at in Sobantu Village.

October

14 – The Soweto community calls for a stayaway to protest against rent increases.

November

21 – A terrorist is killed in Chiawelo and a child is injured by police in the process.

What Was Happening When

1980 – Impango 

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January

14 – The local community at Soekmekaar resists forced removal and damages the police station.

March

12 – The Nederduits Gereformeerde Kerk (NGK) together with its sister churches for Blacks (the NGK in Afrika), Coloureds (the NG Sendingkerk) and Indians (the Reformed Church in Africa), issue a statement that the Churches will bring no objection in principle should authorities judge that circumstances justify reconsideration of the Immorality Act and the Mixed Marriages Act.

April

4 – Umkhonto we Sizwe attacks the Booysens Police Station in Johannesburg with grenades, rocket launchers and AK47s.

May

2 – Pink Floyd’s Another Brick in the Wall is banned because the government fears that it might be used as a song of liberty by black school children.

June

1 – Bombs explode at Sasol One and Two and Natref Eight at Sasolburg and Secunda, with no injuries and RM58 damage. The attack was organised by Solomon Mahlangu of the Umkhonto weSizwe Special Operations.

August

Special Branch policeman Detective-Sergeant T.G. Zondi is shot at in Sobantu Village.

October

14 – The Soweto community calls for a stayaway to protest against rent increases.

November

21 – A terrorist is killed in Chiawelo and a child is injured by police in the process.

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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.

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Gravel Road Entertainment

Treasure Hunters

Treasure Hunter South African Films

“Treasure Hunters” (also known as “Ukuzingala”) was shot on 16mm in 1989 and is 75 minutes long. This adventure film was produced by Oubaas Olivier and directed by Tonie vd Merwe. Starring Gugo Mhlangu, Innocent Gumende, Jabu Luthuli and Victor Nklago, catch it on SABC 1 this Sunday night at 8:30pm!

TAGLINE

After hearing a tale of a mysterious lost treasure, an old man’s family heads off on a perilous journey only to suffer the same fate as the shipwrecked survivors from sixty years ago.

SYNOPSIS

A young Zulu boy secretly watches as four shipwrecked survivors struggle ashore. Between them they carry a large chest of treasure.

The four survivors struggle off, heading inland, closely guarding the chest they carry with them. The young boy follows, keeping to the shadows, watching as one by one the survivors succumb to the treacherous journey, finally leaving only the treasure chest behind.

Sixty years later, the young boy now an old man, retells the story of the shipwrecked survivors and the mysterious treasure chest to his descendants. Deciding to retrace the trail in the hopes of finding the lost treasure, the old man’s family head off on the treacherous adventure. But tragedy strikes, only for them to suffer the same fate as the survivors so many years before them.

Treasure Hunter South African Films

On The Expresso Show on SABC!

CEO of Gravel Road Entertainment, Benjamin Cowley, and Producer/Director Tonie van der Merwe sat down with Expresso presenter Katlego Maboe to talk about the Mayibuye Film Festival currently running on SABC1. For more information on the festival and the films, read this article and join the conversation with us on Facebook here.

Benjamin Cowley and Tonie vd Merwe on the Expresso Show on SABC

Benjamin Cowley and Tonie vd Merwe on the Expresso Show on SABC

Benjamin Cowley, Katlego Maboe and Tonie vd Merwe on the Expresso Show on SABC

Benjamin Cowley, Katlego Maboe and Tonie vd Merwe on the Expresso Show on SABC

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