Five new films open in South African cinemas today. It’s also the second day of the 34th annual Durban International Film Festival so East Coasters have even more movies to choose from. No matter where you are though in the Rainbow Nation, you’re sure to find something to enjoy!
World War Z:
Screening in 2D and CONVERTED 3D is this very, very loose adaptation of Max Brooks’ instant classic zombie novel. Brad Pitt stars as a former UN employee who must discover the origins of a global zombie outbreak that threatens to wipe out humanity. With the emphasis more on action and thrills than gore, World War Z is a PG-13 zombie flick.
World War Z had a very rough development period, subjected to studio meddling, rewrites and reshoots. Still, if you’re not a hardcore fan of the book, the film is apparently still very watchable. Kervyn calls it a slick, edge-of-your-seat experience… even if it’s very shallow. Internationally, critics have called described it as smart and satisfying, although it starts stronger than it finishes. A solid 67% Fresh on review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes.
Those Wedding Crashers are back in this comedy about two retrenched salesmen (Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson) who manage to worm their way into an internship at Google. They find themselves competing against many brilliant – and some socially dysfunctional – college graduates for jobs at the company.
Most critics have dismissed The Internship as a blatant movie-length ad for Google. Vaughn and Wilson bring enough charm to make it watchable but it’s mildly funny at best, and incredibly predictable.
I Give It a Year:
A British romantic comedy from the writer of Bruno and Borat? Why not? Rose Byrne and Rafe Spall are mismatched newlyweds who find their differences more grating every day. As they attempt to save their marriage they decide to bring possible love interests (Anna Faris, Simon Baker) together.
You can read Kervyn’s here. In short though, I Give It a Year actually defies romcom expectations. It’s very witty – dry English humour and snarky one-liners dominate – and very R-rated. Some have complained though that it thinks it’s smarter than it really is.
The Company You Keep:
Robert Redford directs, produces and stars in this action thriller and novel adaptation. He plays a lawyer and single father whose past as a bank-robbing anti-Vietnam War militant is exposed by an ambitious investigative journalist (Shia LaBeouf). He is then forced to clear his name. Also with Susan Sarandon, Julie Christie, Terrence Howard, Anna Kendrick, Stanley Tucci and way more famous faces.
According to some critics, The Company You Keep is an enjoyable, well-crafted thriller with a focus on characters and provocative issues. Others have called it painfully slow and unaffecting.
Screening in limited release is this highly acclaimed French drama, which won this year’s Best Foreign Film Oscar, along with being nominated for Best Film overall, and scooping many, many other accolades. Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva play an octogenarian couple whose relationship is drastically altered when the wife has a paralysing stroke.
Unsurprising, given the subject matter, Amour is hardcore emotional stuff. For those who can take it, it’s been called a masterpiece – powerfully honest and painful, without any sentimentality.
Last Updated: July 19, 2013