Film & Stage Ratings (Nov 16-22)

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:  Ster-Kinekor, Nu Metro and Suncoast CineCentre display adverts for KwaZulu-Natal cinemas appear at the end of this post.
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Dan Fogler, left, and Eddie Redmayne in The Crimes of Grindelwald.

FILMS NEW ON CIRCUIT IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS – FROM NOVEMBER 16

THEY SHALL NOT GROW OLD ****
Director: Peter Jackson

A fascinating  documentary about World War I with never-before-seen footage to commemorate the centennial of the end of the war.

THE CRIMES OF GRINDELWALD ***
Director: David Yates
Stars: Eddie Redmayne, Jude Law, Dan Folgler, Johnny Depp

The second installment of the Fantastic Beasts series set in J K Rowling’s Wizarding World, featuring the adventures of magizoologist Newt Scamander.

WIDOWS ***
Director: Steve McQueen
Stars: Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, Elizabeth Debicki

A crime drama set in contemporary Chicago, amid a time of turmoil, four women with nothing in common except a debt left behind by their dead husbands’ criminal activities, take fate into their own hands, and conspire to forge a future on their own terms.

ANON ***
Director: Andrew Niccol
Stars: Clive Onwe, Afiya Bennett, Morgan Allen

In a world without anonymity or crime, a detective meets a woman who threatens their security.

SAMSON ET DELILAH ***
Director: Darko Tresnjak
Stars: Roberto Alagna, Elīna Garanča

Dazzling costumes and scenery, along with acclaimed performances by tenor Roberto Alagna and mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča, led Vogue to describe this opera as a feast for the eyes and ears”, while WQXR hailed the production as “epic, pagan and sexy …[with] spectacular visual elements”. Conducted by Sir Mark Elder and staged by Tony Award–winning director Darko TresnjakSamson et Delila revisits the biblical story of the two lovers, whose romance ends in betrayal. This is Camille Saint Saens’s most regularly performed opera. Screenings at Cinema Nouveau cinemas are at 5pm on Saturday, 2.30pm on Sunday and 11.30am on Thursday

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A scene from the animated romp, Smallfoot.

FILMS STILL ON CIRCUIT IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS

THE NUTCRACKER AND THE FOUR REALMS ***
Directors: Lasse Hallstrom and Joe Johnston
Stars: Mackenzie Foy, Morgan Freeman, Keira Knightley.

A fantasy spectacle in which a young girl is transported into a magical world of gingerbread soldiers and an army of mice.

A STAR IS BORN ***
Director: Bradley Cooper
Stars: Lady Gaga, Bradley Cooper

The fourth big-screen version of the rags-to-riches story, this time with Bradley Cooper as the fading music star who watches as his prodigy rises. There is strong Oscar buzz for Lady Gaga.

JOHNNY ENGLISH STRIKES AGAIN ***
Director:  David Kerr
Stars: Rowan Atkinson, Emma Thompson

After a cyber-attack reveals the identity of all of the active undercover agents in Britain, bumbling spy Johnny English is forced to come out of retirement to find the mastermind hacker.

PEPPERMINT ***
Director:  Pierre Morel
Stars: Jennifer Garner, John Gallagher jnr, John Ortiz

A thriller about how, five years after her husband and daughter are killed in a senseless act of violence, a woman comes back from self-imposed exile to seek revenge against those responsible and the system that let them go free.

NOBODY’S FOOL **
Director: Tyler Perry
Stars: Tiffany Haddish, Courtney Henggeler, Missi Pyle

A woman is released from prison and reunites with her sister. She soon discovers that her sister is in an online relationship with a man who may not be what he seems.

ESCAPE PLAN 2: HADES ***
Director: Steven C Miller
Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Dave Bautista

Years after he fought his way out of an inescapable prison, Ray Breslin has organised a new top-notch security force. But when one of his team members goes missing, Breslin must return to the hell he once escaped from.

GOOSEBUMPS 2: HAUNTED HALLOWEEN **
Director: Ari Sandel
Stars: Madison Iseman, Jeremy Ray Taylor

Two young friends find a magic book that brings a ventriloquist’s dummy to life.

VENOM **
Director: Ruben Fleischer
Stars: Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams, Woody Harrelson

When Eddie Brock acquires the powers of a symbiote, he will have to release his alter-ego, Venom, to save his life.

SMALLFOOT **
Director: Karey Kirkpatrick and Jason Reisig
Stars: James Corden, Channing Tatum, Zendaya

An animated adventure that tells of a Yeti that is convinced that the elusive creatures known as “human” really do exist. It looks like it could be great fun.

NIGHT SCHOOL **
Director: Michael D Lee
Stars: Kevin Hart

A film about a group of troublemakers forced to attend night school in the hope that they will pass exams to finish high school.

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The Gee Jays vocal trio present their Don’t Tune Me – Ek Se, in Kloof this weekend.

NOW ON STAGE IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS

THE GEE JAYS: DON’T TUNE ME… EK SE
(Rhumbelow Theatre, Tina’s Hotel, Beryldene Road, Kloof)

Gary McKenzie, John Didlick and Grant Bell with a look back at all things ’70s in South Africa – a lightweight show saluting Springbok Radio hits of yesteryear. Presented at 8pm on Friday and Saturday and 2pm on Sunday. Tickets cost R150 each (R130 for pensioners and students with valid student cards). Booking is at Computicket or by calling Roland Stansell at 082 499 8636. (BS)

THAT’S LIFE
(Rhumbelow Theatre, Cunningham Road, Umbilo, Durban)

Singers Samantha Landers and Shylo Pereira, accompanied by pianist Evan Roberts, present an excellent selection of show tunes and pop songs with a loose theme of love lost and found. Presented at 8pm on Friday and Saturday and 2pm on Sunday. One may take along one’s own meals or snacks to the venue, but no beverages as a pub is on the premises. Light meals and snacks may also be bought at the venue. Tickets cost R150 (R130 for pensioners and students) and can be booked at Computicket or by phoning 082 499 8636. (BS)

BEST OF DECADES
(Rockwood Theatre, Sibaya Casino, near Umhlanga)

Showcasing a vibrant parade of chart-topping hits from the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and today, this showband entertainment features Durban talents Andrew Webster, Calli Thomson,Kirsty van der Linde and Dylan van der Linde, among others. The theatre opens at 6.30pm – meals are on sale at the venue – with the show commencing at 8pm Thursdays to Saturdays. Tickets cost only R99 each on Thursdays, and R130 each for other performances, but half price for pensioners at the 2pm Sunday matinee performances, when under-12s get in free. (BS)

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


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