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TV & Movies

  • South Africa’s box office: Dunkirk done did it

    Christopher Nolan's war epic Dunkirk met the praise of many a critic but now it has passed the ultimate test: the South African audience. Kicking Despicable Me 3 down to second after it lost its school holiday mojo, Dunkirk soared right into first place (get it? Because there are planes in it? I'm a history buff). The film -- which will almost certainly be Oscar-nominated -- has already doubled its budget, pulling in US$232-million worldwide. But how did the other films fair this weekend (that's another plane joke)? (28 to 30 July) Last week's top three all shifted down one spot to make room for Dunkirk: Spider-Man: Homecoming is now in third,...

  • #NoConfederate: Game of Thrones shares limelight with protest

    Last week, HBO announced a new series to be headed by Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and DB Weiss. Currently dubbed Confederate, the show is set to tell the story of a United States that never outlawed slavery. The announcement was widely criticised -- largely because many don't believe such a sensitive topic should be entertained by two white creators. Last night, #OscarsSoWhite creator @ReignofApril started a new hashtag -- #NoConfederate -- to protest the continuation of the show, and got it trending in the top three worldwide while Game of Thrones aired. We did it!!! We trended #1 nationwide & #2 worldwide for most of the hour. THIS...

  • Last week in trailers: Matt Damon, Pennywise & other scary white guys

    Comic-Con Christmas is over. We ate all the food at once, and now it's Boxing Day and the only leftovers are our aunt's under-cooked brussel sprouts and some soggy malva pudding that someone definitely stuck their finger in. But I'll be damned if I'm cooking today, so let's push through with last week's offering. It Horror and comedy editing are very closely related, and many of the same filmmaking techniques are used to elicit opposing reactions. If there's any proof just how easily you could miss your mark, it's the hilarious trailers Warner Bros. has released for It.  Not convinced? Watch this edited version with Shrek as...

  • Dunkirk movie review: made of the Reich stuff

    The early months of World War Two were known as the phoney war for good reason, as Germany took Poland without Warsaw's allies (Britain and France) committing much in the way of troops on the ground. But the invasion of France in May 1940 finally drew the major allies into the war, as Britain committed her troops to the French. It was an ill-fated move that saw the Allies driven into a small strip of coastline at Dunkirk, France, awaiting evacuation under heavy German bombardment. It's against this backdrop that Christopher Nolan's eponymous take on the evacuation takes place -- and...

  • South Africa’s box office: Valerian bombs as the kids have their say

    It was the last weekend of public school holidays, and South Africa's children were not going back to school until they had assured their faves' rightful places at the top of the charts. The box office has always been a top priority for today's youth, and kids across the country have been spending their breaks planning this like a coup. And they did it: they've got control. But what did this mean for our charts this weekend? (21 to 23 July) The school holidays closed with Despicable Me 3 still in top spot after being pushed to second two weeks ago. The animated classic that...

  • Last week in trailers: it’s Comic-Con Christmas, baby

    Some weeks, absolutely no interesting trailers get released and building this roundup feels futile. Other weeks, there are so many trailers I wonder if I'll even have time to watch them all (I'm kidding, I always do.) Comic-Con week is the latter, so let's jump straight in. Justice League Yes, they're still pretending Superman is dead. Yes, they did give Wonder Woman a big role in the trailer after her successful solo endeavour, and, yes, this is going to be so much fun. Justice League is out in South Africa 17 November. (As a side note: a 3-minute trailer for Avengers: Infinity War was leaked, but it's terrible...

  • American Horror Story season seven now has a title

    Ryan Murphy has announced the title of the next American Horror Story season: Cult. AHS: CULT — Ryan Murphy (@MrRPMurphy) July 21, 2017 Murphy has kept relatively quiet about plot details, but mentioned in an interview February that the season was going to be about the 2016 US election. Ryan Murphy Reveals the Theme for Season 7 of American Horror Story pic.twitter.com/ZsGW0PmOql — AmericanHorrorStory (@AHS7CuIt) February 16, 2017 The title announcement also came with a website (only available to the US, or to those with sneaky VPNs), a teaser video and a release date: 5 September. American Horror Story: Cult Announcement! #AHS7pic.twitter.com/iWhXCaxJiZ — AmericanHorrorStory (@AHSFXCult) July 21, 2017 The video features...

  • Christopher Nolan labels Netflix ‘mindless’, the internet responds

    Christopher Nolan has come out in defense of theatrical distributions ahead of his latest film Dunkirk's release. In an interview with IndieWire, the director called Netflix's distribution policy "mindless" in that it requires content to be simultaneously released on digital and in theatres. "I think they're missing a huge opportunity," he said. "You can see that Amazon is very clearly happy to not make that same mistake. The theaters have a 90-day window. It’s a perfectly usable model. It’s terrific." Christopher Nolan had a few choice words about streaming service Netflix this week, calling it 'mindless' Nolan is famous for his determination to shoot on film, and works to optimise...

  • South Africa’s Box Office: Despicable Me 3 climbs over Spider-Man to first

    In the summer of blockbusters, you win or you die. And Spider-Man: Homecoming did not win. It was the move that shocked the nation: after allowing the Marvel film a week of glory, Despicable Me 3 rose from second to take back its rightful seat on the throne. Not only did the animation topple its biggest competition, but it also pulled in R10-million in its third weekend, furthering its lead as highest life-to-date grosser with just over R30.5-million in total sales. The move was likely aided by school holidays, but to say Spider-Man wouldn't benefit from that would be a lie -- so we offer nothing but...

  • Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets review: empty, colourful fun

    Details around Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets have been kept so secretive you'd be mistaken for thinking it was the next Star Wars flick. When questioned about the quiet that surrounds this film, actress Cara Delevingne said simply: "This is gonna be the best movie of all time." Unfortunately, it isn't. Valerian is a colourful and refreshing addition to the sci-fi genre, but the story lacks the substance and development that the first of a franchise needs to keep momentum. The film offers several minutes of exposition for the City of a Thousand planets, the space station that houses...

  • Lots of people stopped watching porn for Game of Thrones’ season premiere

    Game of Thrones aired its season premiere Sunday night to a record 10.1-million viewers, stealing PornHub visitors away from their usual Sunday night me-time. The company reported that traffic was down 4.5% in the US during the live showing as opposed to a regular Sunday -- but this isn't even the most significant dip during an episode of HBO's hit show. Back in 2016, the season six finale robbed 5.2% of US viewers away from the popular pornography site. Another notable shift happened during the fourth episode of season six, in which Sansa Stark and Jon Snow reunited. Turns out family sometimes is more important. This may...

  • How to survive Game of Thrones season as an ex-fan

    Back in 2011, Game of Thrones and I got on swimmingly. But as the seasons went on, we slowly drifted apart. I can't say if it was the unnecessary violence against women, the destruction of Sansa Stark's character or the heroisation of Tyrion Lannister -- but, as in many relationships, by the fifth year we were unrecognisable to each other. Our parting was not amicable. While I had turned my back on Thrones, though, my friends, family, and seemingly the entire world maintained their love for it. And so every year, for ten long weeks, I have to be reminded of the love I...

  • Twitter reacts to first female Doctor Who

    Jodie Whittaker has been named the first female Doctor in popular British series Doctor Who, and people have opinions about it. From "this alien can't possibly morph into anything but a white man" to "women will ruin everything you love," these opinions highlight the greater need for everyone to step away from their screens and go for a walk in the crisp winter air. Meet the Thirteenth Doctor #DoctorWho #Doctor13 pic.twitter.com/txHGz9tJEe — Doctor Who Official (@bbcdoctorwho) July 16, 2017 Many (male) fans were upset that the new series wouldn't represent them, despite having 36 seasons they can return to should they feel the need. Imagine one...

  • Last week in trailers: A Wrinkle in Time, The Dark Tower & Mary Poppins Returns

    Disney's D23 expo last week meant a ton of content for convention-goers' eyes only (that included an Incredibles 2 teaser and Avengers: Infinity War footage). But patience is a virtue, and those of us unable to attend will have to sate our trailer appetites with what was released to the public this week. I know. Life sucks. A Wrinkle in Time We'll start with what was released at D23: the first trailer for Ava Duvernay's A Wrinkle in Time. The adaptation of classic 1963 novel features an all-star cast of Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Mindy Kaling, Zach Galifianakis and Chris Pine. The much-anticipated trailer racked up over 2.5-million views in two days,...

  • The Emmys consistently celebrates boring television: a 2017 list

    Every year I hold my breath, expecting the television academy -- those responsible for the Emmys -- to make right its errors of the past. Every year, I think that maybe this time they'll award clever, original shows with heart and life. And every year, I end up drowning my sorrows in red wine and Nik Naks. Let me refresh your memory: last year, Game of Thrones won best drama for the second year in a row. Sherlock won best TV movie. The Voice won best reality competition. All of those have been running for a really long time. Sure, there were some...