So I don’t know if the Woodstock Film Festival is such a big thing or not. But it’s an international film festival regardless and a South African film just took two awards from it this past weekend. So I think its fair for us to make it a big thing. It has also been featured at numerous other international film festivals and won a top award at the Berlin Film Festival, so its certainly not just a one festival pony either. I guess what I’m trying to say through all this, is that this film deserves your attention.
Local film Shepherds and Butchers won the coveted The Maverick Award for Best Feature Narrative and the Hasklell Wexler Award for Best Cinematography at the event and is getting strong reviews from the early appearances it has had. It’s a local film that is starting to make noises for all the right reasons and something to feel proud of in our country.
The story of Shepherds and Butchers centres on a lawyer who takes on a case of a prison guard in South Africa who is traumatized by the executions he’s witnessed. It’s a poignant look at the reality many prison guards face and the psychological damage that can take place if they are not looked after. It’s an incredible, fresh idea which certainly sets it apart, not just domestically, but from other international films as well.
The film is local, but also secured some incredible international talent in its cast which should make the film quite appealing to a global audience as well. The main stars include Garion Dowds, Steve Coogan and Andrea Riseborough with a host of well-known local actors making their mark on the film including Deon Lotz, Robert Hobbs, Eduan van Jaarsveldt, Marcel van Heerden and Sylvia Mdunyelwa.
The film is directed by Oliver Schmitz off a screenplay from Brian Cox and produced by Anant Singh. Check out the trailer below.
I love seeing local films stand up and compete with international films and so am suitably excited about this. It looks really well produced, features some really good cinematography by the looks of the trailer and what looks like some superb, emotional performances from the actors. The story is also challenging and intriguing enough that I’m hoping it will appeal to a wider audience.
And the one advantage we do have with it being local, is that we won’t have to wait too long for it to be released either. Shepherds and Butchers will be released at South African cinemas on Friday, 28 October.
Last Updated: October 19, 2016