Review: ‘34 South’

Young South Africans looking for adventure and meaning in their lives are little more than symbolic ciphers in "34 South," a marginally amusing comedy-drama most notable as the first feature by a non-white female South African director. Niche fests abroad may show slight interest.

Young South Africans looking for adventure and meaning in their lives are little more than symbolic ciphers in “34 South,” a marginally amusing comedy-drama most notable as the first feature by a non-white female South African director. Script by producer Dingi Ntuli, Beverly Mitchell and Weaam Williams and helming by Maganthrie Pillay display a firmer grasp of the idea than the execution of a road pic, depicting every ethnic strain in the Capetown region where pic is set. Ultra-indie production opened in Los Angeles on March 11 and will be shown caravan style across the country. Niche fests abroad may show slight interest.

Band of economically struggling Capetown young folks get the notion to hop in a slightly hobbled van and trek to Johannesburg, the burg of their dreams. Each member of the group is less a distinct character than a symbolic type, and the story moves along in an equally literal fashion. The van breaks down within convenient distance of a village rich with a history that encompasses South Africa’s multicultural past, but the big ideas clash with time outs for weak comedy, tragedy and romance.

34 South

South Africa

Production

A CBDC release (in South Africa) of a Digital African Motion Pictures presentation of a Hybrid Films production. Produced by Dingi Ntuli. Directed by Maganthrie Pillay. Screenplay, Dingi Ntuli, Beverly Mitchell, Weaam Williams.

Crew

Camera (color, DV), Keith Shirlaw; editors, Jackie Le Cordeur, Matthew Brown; music, Alex Van Heerden, Ntuli; production designer, Dagogo Dominas. Reviewed at Pan African Film Festival, Los Angeles, Feb. 19, 2005. Running time: 106 MIN.

With

Az Abrahams, Rasool Hendricks, Mara Bethela, Marguerita Freeks, Ricardo Marnewick, Stephan Roach, Leanne Sayster, Ricardo Marnewyk. (English, Dhose, Afrikaans dialogue)
Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety

Loading