Watch: SA sci-fi short ‘Apocalypse Now Now’ evokes District 9, Harry Potter

A short film directed by South African director Michael Matthews has won the prestigious Short of the Week — and it’s got some tongues wagging.

Based on Charlie Human’s urban-fantasy novel Apocalypse Now Now, the short serves as proof-of-concept for an upcoming feature film written by District 9 writer Terri Tatchell.

It tells of Capetonian schoolboy/porn-dealer Baxter Zevcenko whose dream girl Esme is kidnapped, ostensibly by supernatural forces. Enlisting the help of “Cape Town’s finest, drunkest bounty hunter”, he embarks on a mission to fight some monsters and get her back.

The public release of the proof-of-concept short, Tatchell told The Verge, is to bring in good feedback from viewers — and so far it seems to have achieved that.

The video has raked in over 32 000 views in two days, and the comment section is filled with praise.

“So so so freaking good! Wow! We want more!!!!” writes one user. “Short but captivating,” another. Others called for Netflix deals and for producers to “throw fifty million at this and see what grows please”.

Even the negative comments couldn’t stay too negative: “I absolutely hated the characters and the dialogue but this was very well made and filmed non the less (sic). Awesome work!”

Director Matthew’s first feature film Five Fingers for Marseilles is set to be released at the Toronto International Film Festival next month, the trailer of which can be watched here. It is one of four South African films at the festival, sharing the spotlight with Jenna Bass’ High FantasyKhalo Matabane’s The Number, and Anjali Nayar and Hawa Essuman’s Silas.



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