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TV & Movies

  • Oscars 2017 round-up: They announced the wrong best picture

    What a time to be alive. The 2017 Academy Awards gave and took as it saw fit in a ceremony that will be remembered for decades to come. If you don't have three hours to spend watching rich people commend other rich people for their work, but still want to join in in the small talk, you've come to the right place. Here are the best and worst moments of the 89th running of the Oscars. The host Jimmy Kimmel hosted this year and did an underwhelming job. His monologue was boring, as he spent his time mocking celebrities, but never pushing any...

  • Last week in trailers: Diary of a Wimpy Week

    The Academy Awards -- Hollywood's proudest event -- took place last night, so it makes sense that there weren't that many trailers released in the past week. No one wants to compete with that attention. But the competition didn't deter some, and I desperately wish it had. If you're someone who enjoys objectively bad films (we're all human), then this week is going to blow your mind. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul Diary of Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul is the fourth installment in the franchise, and is intended to be a sequel despite starring an entirely new cast. The plot? Greg reroutes the...

  • Hidden Figures movie review: a vibrant celebration of black women

    Theodore Melfi’s Hidden Figures tells the jubilant story of three African American women who made it possible for the US to put John Glenn into space.The film is unrelenting in its optimism, and its joy is so infectious it could creep into the coldest of hearts. Based on the book of the same name, Hidden Figures details how Katherine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monáe) defied the odds stacked against black women in 1960s America and became vital parts of NASA’s team. A major reason the film is so joyous is its cast. Taraji...

  • Nightwing to bring light to DC’s cinematic universe

    It's no secret that DC's films are struggling. Neither Suicide Squad nor Batman v Superman were able to crack the US$1 billion mark at the office -- while Marvel's Avengers: Age of Ultron and Captain America: Civil War both smashed it. Critical reception has not been great either -- Suicide Squad received a dismal 26% from Rotten Tomatoes, and Batman v Superman did exactly 1% better. A lot of the the criticism for the films stems from the fact that DC takes itself too seriously (and its writers seem to have no understanding what a plot is). The grimdark genre has worn itself thin and films like Deadpool are being embraced with furvor. So it comes with great...

  • Complaining about abusers at the Oscars won’t change anything [Opinion]

    I don’t remember a time the distinction between art and artist wasn't being argued. It’s a debate that seemingly has no end and it’s not because there’s no right answer. It’s because the ones with the power to end it don’t seem to care. The battle is one of ethics vs industry, and when it comes to money, industry always wins out. And this issue is all about money. Year after year, the Oscars honours artists who have been accused (and sometimes convicted) of heinous crimes. Woody Allen is a famous example. Even after being accused of sexually abusing his adoptive...

  • South Africa’s box office chart: Fifty Shades Darker comes first yet again

    Sex sells and South Africans are totally buying. This past weekend saw Fifty Shades Darker hold strong in first place at the box office, suggesting that plot and character development are irrelevant when you can watch stock characters get kinky enough for middle-aged white women. So what does that mean for the other films this weekend (17 to 19 February 2017)? The Great Wall starring Matt Damon debuted at number two and proved my theory about plot. Matt Damon in armour and a pony tail is just kinky enough for middle-aged women to get behind. The Lego Batman Movie held its own in third place, as former champion of...

  • Last week in trailers: sexy La La Land, funny Godzilla and sadly Adam Sandler

    "Why, oh, why is Adam Sandler still making movies?" and other questions in this week's trailer round up. Let's do this. Sandy Wexler Let's quickly rip off this plaster. Adam Sandler is starring in Netflix original Sandy Wexler.  Watching the trailer for the first time, I thought it was the biopic of a poor soul who worked his whole life only for Adam Sandler to cement his legacy. The reality is sadder: this is a fictional story about an annoying talent manager whom everyone hates, but seems to do well anyway. After only two minutes, I was ready to rip out my ear drums if it...

  • The Great Wall: Twitter mocks blockbuster with #ThankYouMattDamon

    The Great Wall, released in South African cinemas today, is yet another film dealing with the controversy that comes with casting a white actor in an ostensibly Asian role. This time, the story is of an elite force defending China along its famous border. The enemy? Dragons, of course. Annoyed audience members took to Twitter to criticise what was viewed as a narrative with a white saviour complex. With the help of #ThankYouMattDamon, users tweeted about everything Matt Damon has done for Asia. all of you asian kids who get red packets for lunar new year have matt damon to thank... he started the...

  • American Horror Story: Donald Trump is actually happening

    Gone are the days of mindless escapism. Ryan Murphy, the creator of American Horror Story, has revealed that the show's upcoming season seven will be based on last year's US Presidential election. "I don't have a title, but the season that we begin shooting in June will be about the election," Murphy confirmed on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen on Wednesday night. When asked if a Donald Trump-like figure would be a focus, the showrunner would not give a definite answer. "Uh, maybe," was all he would give fans. It was confirmed last month that Sarah Paulson and Evan Peters would be returning to the hit...

  • Ghost in the Shell official trailer: a shell of its former self?

    Paramount Pictures released the official Ghost in the Shell trailer Monday, dismaying many with apparent plot changes and the casting of Scarlett Johansson. The trailer features stunning visuals with CGI that rivals all major blockbusters, but many fans likened the plot to that of Robocop. "It's a perfect interpretation to the anime on a visual aspect, but spiritually it seems to be going somewhere else," comments YouTube user The Human Robot. Ghost in the Shell might look impressive, but YouTubers aren't best pleased with the plot Doyle Harken comments that the "brainy" aspects of the original anime seem to be diluted for the sake of an easy plot...

  • South Africa’s box office chart: Fifty Shades Darker likes it on top

    Ignoring the film critics, South Africans embraced their sexy side this weekend and Fifty Shades Darker proved number one in their hearts and other body parts. But how did the other films fare after its debut at the top this weekend? (10 to 12 February 2017) The Lego Batman Movie debuted at number three, unable to pass last week's number one xXx: The Return of Xander Cage. La La Land dropped down two places to fifth, and the musical in which people can actually sing Sing tragically saw itself tumbling down four spots to eighth. Denial and Rings debuted at ninth and tenth respectively, kicking out Why Him? and Ballerina. Failing martian hearts proved too...

  • LEGO Batman Movie review: colourful, frantic, hilarious

    The LEGO Batman Movie follows the success of The LEGO Movie quite well, so much so that it surpasses it. Will Arnette's comedic delivery combined with the methodical and humorous script writing kept the entire audience in hysterical laughter. In this new offering, Batman is forced to come to terms with his greatest enemy -- his family. The LEGO Batman Movie, directed by Chris McKay who's known for his work on Robot Chicken, created a great way of not only visually telling a compelling story but also an emotional one. After Arnette's performance in the first LEGO movie, I was curious...

  • Last week in trailers: Avengers, a Defender and a talking baby

    Last week was a big one for Marvel, premiering first looks and trailers for The Avengers: Infinity Wars and Iron Fist. But macho superhero trailers weren't the only ones making waves, as a women-led psychological thriller and an animated talking baby made their debuts. Let's get right to it. Iron Fist  The last of the Defenders to get their own series before the merge, Iron Fist promises to have all of the same charm and action as its predecessors. Set to Apashe's 'I'm a Dragon', the trailer promises a season of discipline, success, and a healthy dose of sexual tension. Finn Jones stars as Danny Rand, a presumed-dead heir to his...

  • A United Kingdom movie review: soft lighting, softer convictions

    There is no denying that extreme right movements are rising in popularity. Lines have been drawn in the sand and global bipartisanship is the order of the day. Amma Asante’s A United Kingdom finds a voice in this time, reflecting the politics of today against our history -- reminding and warning us of where we come from. The film tells the story of the interracial marriage between Sir Seretse Khama (a charming David Oyelowo) and his English wife Ruth (Rosamund Pike). Their love was forbidden, both by the British and by Khama’s uncle. Khama was to become a king in...

  • Introducing Snapchat, the new frontier in storytelling

    Most people know Snapchat as the social network for watching people you only slightly care about play around with filters you really don't care about. While that may be all some people see, young innovators are recognising it as a platform to tell stories. Because, heck, that's what the feature is called, right? The first ever Snapchat movie premiered in June last year. Sickhouse was sadistically conceived by Hannah Macpherson, who saw an opportunity to merge creation and distribution methods in one foul swoop. Pairing up with YouTuber Andrea Russett, Macpherson used the social media starlet's Snapchat account to slowly lure...