Tuesday, January 03, 2006
South African film, TSOTSI
Dir: Gavin Hood. Based on the novel by: Athol Fugard
Not often we get to see many films from the African continent, let alone South Africa, so i hope this film gets a local cinema release before it ends up on SBS in a few years. In fact I reckon I've seen more Slovenian films than ones from SA. It's won a heap of awards at international film festivals & the stills on the website infers that it is cinematically striking. It keeps getting compared to the Brazilian film, City of God, so that is also an indication of quality & intensity.
Set amidst the sprawling Johannesburg township of Soweto - where survival is the primary objective - "Tsotsi" traces six days in the life of a ruthless young gang leader who ends up caring for a baby accidentally kidnapped during a car-jacking.
"Tsotsi" is a gritty and moving portrait of an angry young man living in a state of extreme urban deprivation. His world pumps with the raw energy of "Kwaito music" - the modern beat of the ghetto that reflects his troubled state of mind.
The film is a psychological thriller in which the protagonist is compelled to confront his own brutal nature and face the consequences of his actions. It puts a human face on both the victims and the perpetrators of violent crime and is ultimately a story of hope and a triumph of love over rage.
"Tsotsi" literally means "thug" or "gangster" in the street language of South Africa's townships and ghettos. "Kwaito" is South Africa's answer to American Hip Hop.
International release dates:
US-Feb 26, Netherlands-March 9, UK-March 17, Germany-May 4.
• Tsotsi film website