Film & Stage Ratings (Oct 20-26)

CINEMA RATINGS
***** EXCELLENT  ****VERY GOOD  *** GOOD  **AVERAGE  * POOR

Film ratings are by Billy Suter or from Internet Movie Data Base.  Theatre ratings are by Billy Suter.
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Note:  The Ster-Kinekor, Nu Metro and Suncoast CineCentre display adverts for KwaZulu-Natal cinemas are at end of this post.
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A scene from Geostorm, featuring Gerard Butler, Jim Sturgess and Abbie Cornish.

FILMS NEW ON  CIRCUIT  IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS – FROM OCTOBER 20

GEOSTORM ***
Director: Dean Devlin
Stars: Gerard Butler, Jim Sturgess, Abbie Cornish

When the network of satellites designed to control the global climate start to attack Earth, it’s a race against the clock to uncover the real threat before a worldwide geostorm wipes out everything and everyone.

HAPPY DEATH DAY***
Director: Christopher Landon
Stars: Jessica Rothe, Israel Broussard, Ruby Modine

A college student must relive the day of her murder over and over again, in a loop that will end only when she discovers her killer’s identity.

THE MOUNTAIN BETWEEN US ***
Director: Hany Anu-Assad
Stars: Idris Elba, Kate Winslet, Beau Bridges

A drama in which two strangers, stranded after a tragic plane crash, must forge a connection to survive the extreme elements of a remote, snow-covered mountain. When they realise help is not coming, they embark on a perilous journey across the wilderness.

TYLER PERRY’S BOO 2! A MADEA HALLOWEEN **
Director: Tyler Perry
Stars: Tkler Perry, Patrice Lovely, Brock O’Hurn

A comedy in which matriarch Madea, Bam and Hattie venture to a haunted camp ground and the group must run for their lives when monsters, goblins and the boogeyman are unleashed.

SECRET SUPERSTAR **
Director: Advait Chandan
Stars: Zaira Wasim, Meher Wij, Raj Arjun

This Indian film revolves around the life of a child who aspires to be a singer.

GOLMAAL AGAIN **
Director: Rohit Shetty
Stars: Ajay Devon, Arshad Warsi, Tusshar Kapoor

The fourth installment of the Golmaal franchise.

MERSAL ***
Director: Atlee Kumar
Stars: Samantha Ruth Prabhu. Joseph Vijay

A magician goes to India and finds his long-lost brother, who is a doctor in the US. He learns about his identity and decides to take revenge for those who killed his parents.

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A scene from the South African film, The Whale Caller. It is based Based on the Zakes Mda novel.

FILMS STILL ON CIRCUIT IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS

VICTORIA AND ABDUL ****
Director: Stephe Frears
Stars: Judi Dench, Ali Fazal, Tim Piggott-Smith

A drama in which Queen Victoria strikes up an unlikely friendship with a young Indian clerk named Abdul Karim.

HOME AGAIN ***
Director: Hallie Meyers-Shyer
Stars: Reese Witherspoon, Lake Bell, Nat Wolff

A romantic comedy in which life for a single mom in Los Angeles takes an unexpected turn when she allows three young guys to move in with her.

THE BIG SICK ***
Director: Michael Showalter
Stars: Kumail Nanjiani. Zoe Kazan, Holly Hunter

Pakistan-born comedian Kumail Nanjiani and grad student Emily Gardner fall in love but struggle as their cultures clash. When Emily contracts a mysterious illness, Kumail finds himself forced to face her feisty parents, his family’s expectations and his true feelings.

BLADE RUNNER 2049 ***
Director: Dennis Villeneuve
Stars: Harrison Ford, Ryan Gosling, Ana de Armas

A sci-fi spectacle in which a young blade runner’s discovery of a long-buried secret leads him to track down former blade runner Rick Deckard, who has been missing for 30 years.

AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH 2: TRUTH TO POWER ***
Director: Bonnie Cohen, Jon Shenk
Stars: Al Gore, Geroge W Bush, John Kerry

A documentary which, a decade after An Inconvenient Truth brought climate change into the heart of popular culture arrives to show just how close we are to a real energy revolution.

THE LAST WORD ***
Director: Mark Pellington
Stars: Shirley MacLaine, Amanda Seyfried, Lee Dixon

A comedy-drama about Harriet, a retired businesswoman, who tries to control everything around her. When she decides to write her own obituary, a young journalist takes up the task of finding out the truth, resulting in a life-altering friendship.

THE WHALE CALLER ***
Director: Zola Maseko
Stars: Amrain Ismael-Essop, Sello Maake Ka-Ncube

Based on the Zakes Mda novel, this is the story of a man in South Africa named Whale Caller. He first appears to be sexually attracted to whales; especially a whale he named Sharisha. As the story progresses, he meets a woman named Saluni, who falls deeply in love with the Whale Caller. Throughout the story, the Whale Caller constantly has internal conflicts.

UNLOCKED ***
Director: Michael Apted
Stars: Noomi Rapace, Orlando Bloom, Toni Collette

A drama centred on a CIA interrogator who  is lured into a ruse that puts London at risk of a biological attack.

SHOT CALLER ***
Director: Ric Roman Waugh
Stars: Jon Bernthal, Lake Bell, Nikolaj Costerf-Waldau

A thriller about a newly released prison gangster is forced by the leaders of his gang to orchestrate a major crime with a brutal rival gang on the streets of Southern California.

SIEMBAMBA ***
Director: Darrell Roodt
Stars: Brandon Auret, Reine Swart, Deanre Reiners

Despite support from her mother, Ruby, Chloe struggles with the demand of being a new mom and goes into a dark depression. With a heightened urge to protect her son, she sees danger in every situation. Chloe starts to hear voices and humming of a childhood lullaby and sees flashes of a strange entity around her child. Convinced that the entity is real, Chloe does everything in her power to protect her son.

THE SNOWMAN **
Dirctor: Tomas Alfredson
Stars: Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson, Chloe Sevigny

This horror-thriller is about a detective, Harry Hole, who investigates the disappearance of a woman whose pink scarf is found wrapped around an ominous-looking snowman.

MY LITTLE PONY: THE MOVIE **
Director: Jayson Thiessen
Stars: Emily Blunt, Kristin Chenoweth, Liev Schreiber

A dark force threatens Ponyville, and the Mane 6 embark on an unforgettable journey beyond Equestria. There they meet new friends and exciting challenges on a quest to use the magic of friendship to save their home. An animated film.

WISH UPON **
Director: John R Leonetti
Stars: Joey King, Ryan Phillippe, Ki Hong Lee

A teenage girl discovers a box that carries magic powers and a deadly price for using them.

KINGSMEN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE **
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Stars: Taron Egerton, Matthew Vaughn, Mark Strong

When their headquarters are destroyed and the world is held hostage, the Kingsmen’s  journey leads them to the discovery of an allied spy organisation in the US. These two elite secret organisations must band together to defeat a common enemy.

THE LEGO NINJAGO MOVIE **
Directors: Charlie Bean and Paul Fisher
Stars: Jackie Chan, Dave Franco, Fred Armisen

Shunned by everyone for being the son of an evil warlord, a teenager seeks to defeat him with the help of his fellow ninjas.

JUDWAA 2 **
Director: David Dhawan
Stars: Salman Jhan, Anupam Kher, Jacqueline Fernandez

A comedy-drama in which Prem and Raja are twin brothers who are separated at birth but are uniquely connected to each other via their reflexes. They reunite as adults and set out to take down the underground smuggling world.

IT ***
Director: Andy Muschietti
Stars: Bill Skarsgard, Jaeden Liberher, Finn Wolfhard.

Originally a 1990 TV mini-series, based on the book by master of the macabre, Stephen King, this remake is about a group of bullied kids who band together when a monster, taking the appearance of a clown, begins hunting children.

THE EMOJI MOVIE *
Director: Tony Leondis
Stars: TJ Miller, Anna Faris, James Corden

A poorly received animated film in which Gene, a multi-expressional emoji, sets out on a journey to become a normal emoji.

THE DARK TOWER **
Director: Nikolaj Arcel
Stars: Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey,  Tom Taylor

An action-fantasy in which the last gunslinger, Roland Deschain, has been locked in an eternal battle with Walter O’Dim, also known as the Man in Black, determined to prevent him from toppling the Dark Tower, which holds the universe together. With the fate of the worlds at stake, good and evil will collide in the ultimate battle as only Roland can defend the Tower from the Man in Black.

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Samantha Peo in Soulfire and Fireflies, in Durban this weekend.

NOW ON STAGE IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS

SOULFIRE AND FIREFLIES
(Rhumbelow Theatre, Umbilo, Durban)

Durban-born, Johannesburg-based Samantha Peo, Strictly Come Dancing SA judge and the star of such hit musicals as Cabaret, Chicago and Thoroughly Modern Millie returns to her hometown for a classy cabaret reflecting on life and love. The show, a hit at the recent Hilton Arts Festival, also features local pianist Evan Roberts. Catch it at 8pm on Friday and Saturday, and 2pm and 6.30pm on Sunday. Tickets cost R150 and booking is at Computicket or by phoning Roland at 082 499 8636. See my interview with Samantha Peo under Theatre. (BS)

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Below are this week’s ads for KwaZulu-Natal from Ster-Kinekor, Nu Metro and Suncoast CineCentre.

 


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