Film & Stage Rating (Aug 9-15)

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: Latest Ster-Kinekor, Nu Metro and Suncoast CineCentre display adverts for KwaZulu-Natal cinemas appear at the end of this post.
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Milo Ventimiglia in The Art of Racing in the Rain, also featuring Kevin Costner.

FILMS NEW ON CIRCUIT IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS – FROM AUGUST 9

THE ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN ***
Director: Simon Curtis
Stars: Kevin Costner, Milo Ventimiglia, Amanda Seyfried

Through his bond with his owner, aspiring Formula One race car driver Denny, golden retriever Enzo learns that the techniques needed on the racetrack can also be used to successfully navigate the journey of life.

SCARY STORIES TO TELL IN THE DARK ***
Director: Andre Ovredal
Stars: Zoe Margaret Colletti, Michael Garza, Gabriel Rush

A group of teens face their fears in order to save their lives.

HER ONLY CHOICE **
Director: Christel Gibson
Stars: Jamaal Avery jnr, Christopher Bates, Veronica Blakney

A woman is faced with a choice to fight for her life or sacrifice it for another. After years of infertility, a newly-expectant mother is diagnosed with a life-altering disease.

PAREY HUT LOVE **
Director: Asim Raza
Stars: Maya Ali, Frieha Altaf, Faheem Azam

A story of an unlikely romance between a young, free-willed, commitment-phobic, aspiring actor, Sheheryar, and a strong-willed expat, Saniya, who meet and fall in love over a series of unplanned encounters at destination weddings.

NERKONDA PAARVAI ***
Director: H Vinoth
Stars: Vidya Balan, Ajith Kumar, Shraddha Srinath

When three young women are implicated in a crime, a retired lawyer steps forward to help them clear their names

JABARIYA JODI **
Director:
Stars: Sidharth Malhotra, Parineeti Chopra

Based on tales of groom kidnappings in Bihar, where a groom is kidnapped to avoid dowry, this film has Sidharth Malhotra playing a thug who helps kidnap grooms.

PLAYMOBIL: THE MOVIE *
Director: Lino SiSalvo
Stars: Dino Andrade, Gabriel Bateman, Ian James Corlett

Animated feature film inspired by the Playmobil brand toys.

Mena Massoud as the title character in the remake of Aladdin.

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FILMS STILL ON CIRCUIT IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS

TOY STORY 4 ****
Director: Josh Cooley
Stars: Tom Haaks, Tim Allen, Annie Potts

When a new toy called “Forky” joins Woody and the gang, a road trip alongside old and new friends reveals how big the world can be for a toy.

THE LION KING ***
Director: Jon Favreau
Stars: Donald Glover, Beyonce, Seth Rogen, John Kani

The photo-realistic remake of Disney’s 1994 animated musical hit about a lion cub’s life lessons as he journeys from infancy to adulthood.

SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME ***
Director: Jon Watts
Stars: Zendaya, Angourie Rice, Tom Holland

Following the events of Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man must step up to take on new threats in a world that has changed forever.

YESTERDAY ***
Director: Danny Boyle
Stars: Himesh Patel, Lily James, Sophia Di Martino

A struggling musician realises he’s the only person on Earth who can remember The Beatles after waking up in an alternate timeline where they never existed.

MEN IN BLACK: INTERNATIONAL ***
Director: F Gary Gray
Stars: Chris Hemsworth, Tessa Thompson, Rebecca Ferguson

The Men in Black have always protected the Earth from the scum of the universe. In this new adventure, they tackle their biggest threat to date: a mole in the Men in Black organisation.

KINGS OF MULBERRY STREET ***
Director: Judy Naidoo
Stars: Aaqil Hoosen, Shaan Nathoo, Amith Sing

A South African film about two young Kwazulu-Natal boys who believe they can defeat the bullying local crime lord threatening their families, through their belief that one can be a Bollywood hero.

THE HUSTLE ***
Director:  Chris Addison
Stars: Anne Hathaway, Rebel Wilson, Tim Blake Nelson

Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson star as female scam artists, one low-rent and the other high-class, who team up to take down the dirty, rotten men who have wronged them.

JOHN WICK CHAPTER 3: PARABELLUM  ***
Director: Chad Stahelski
Stars: Keanu Reeves, Halle Berry, Ian McShane

Super-assassin John Wick is on the run after killing a member of the international assassin’s guild, and with a $14 million price tag on his head,  he is the target of hit men and women everywhere.

ALADDIN ***
Director: Guy Ritchie
Stars: Will Smith, Mena Massoud, Naomi Scott

A live-action version and new interpretation of the hit 1992 Disney musical, with some new characters. It’s about a kind-hearted street urchin and a power-hungry Grand Vizier vie for a magic lamp that has the power to make their deepest wishes come true.

SECRET LIFE OF PETS 2 ***
Directors:  Chris Renaud, Jonathan del Val
Stars: Patton Oswalt, Kevin Hart, Harrison Ford

An animated film that continues the story of Max and his pet friends, following their secret lives after their owners leave them for work or school each day.

FAST & FURIOUS PRESENTS HOBBS AND SHAW ***
Director: David Leitch
Stars: Dwayne Johnson, David Statham, Idris Elba

Lawman Luke Hobbs and outcast Deckard Shaw form an unlikely alliance when a cyber-genetically enhanced villain threatens the future of humanity.

KHANDAANI SHAFAKHANA ***
Director: Shilpi Dasgupta
Stars: Nadira Babbar, Badshah, Rajiv Gupta

A feisty girl from Punjab tries to continue her family traditions by opening a sex clinic to help and aware others in her hometown.

RICHARD SAYS GOODBYE ***
Director: Wayne Roberts
Stars: Johnny Depp, Rosemarie DeWitt, Odessa Young

Also known as The Professor, this film tells of a college professor lives his life with reckless abandon after being diagnosed with a terminal illness.

CRAWL **
Director: Aexandre Aja
Stars: Kaya Scodelario, Barry Pepper, Morfydd Clark

A young woman, while attempting to save her father during a Category 5 hurricane, finds herself trapped in a flooding house and must fight for her life against alligators.

STUBER **
Director: Michael Dowse
Stars: Dave Bautista, Kumail Nanjiani, Mira Sorvino

A comedy-drama in which a detective recruits his Uber driver into an unexpected night of adventure

ANNABELLE COMES HOME **
Director:  Gary Dauberman
Stars: Vera Farminga, Patrick Wilson, McKenna Grace

While babysitting the daughter of Ed and Lorraine Warren, a teenager and her friend unknowingly awaken an evil spirit trapped in a doll.

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The cast of Woodstock, at the Umbilo Rhumbelow Theatre this and next weekend.

NOW ON STAGE IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS

WOODSTOCK
(Rhumbelow Theatre, Cunningham Road, Umbilo, Durban)

Staged every year to great success, this is Durban band The Reals’ fine salute to the memory of the great ’60s music festival that offered three days of music and peace. Also featuring guest singer Marion Loudon, the show has performances this and next weekend. Tickets cost R150 each. Performances at 2pm on Friday, 8pm on Saturday, and 2pm on Sunday. Book at  Computicket or by calling Roland at 082 499 8646. (BS)

SMASH HIT RADIO
(Barnyard Theatre, Suncoast Casino, Durban)

A music show for all listeners – from Louis Armstrong to Ed Sheeran, from Elton John to Lynyrd Skynyrd, UB40 to Bob Segar. The show also pays tribute to Toto, Donna Summer, Th Four Tops, Earth, Wind and Fire, Etta James, Glenn Miller, Cher and others. Performances are at 7.30pm every Tuesday to Thursday, when tickets cost R165 (Tuesday tickets are two-for-one price). Performances on Fridays and Saturdays are at 8pm, when tickets cost R165 each. Sunday shows are at 2pm and tickets cost R130 each (pensioners pay half price and under-12s get in free, for telephonic bookings only. (BS)

MARICO MOON
(Rhumbelow Theatre, Tina’s Hotel, Beryldene Road, Kloof)

Compiled and performed by Barbie Meyer, this is her sixth show celebrating the writing of Herman Charles Bosman, who became famous for capturing the rhythms of backveld Afrikaans speech even though he wrote in English. The compilation of stories is challenging, delightfully written and eminently entertaining. Tickets cost R150 each. Performances are aat 8pm on Friday, 8pm on Saturday and 2pm on Sunday. Book at  Computicket or by calling Roland at 082 499 8646. (BS)

BENNY BUSHWHACKER: HUMAN NATURE
(Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre, Durban)

Ben Voss with a fun, if sometimes corny, comedy highlighting various characters that cross paths with environmentalist Benny Bushwhacker in the African bush, Voss depicting them all. Tickets for the Durban season cost R150 (R100 for under-18s child) and R120 each for block bookings of eight or more. Booking is at Computicket.  Ends August 11. (BS)

‘80S TO NOW
(Rockwood Theatre, Sibaya Casino, near Umhlanga)

A salute to the music of such stars as Wham, Bob Maeley, Bon Jovi,  Alanis Morrissette and many 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. Under-12s now get in free for all performances. (BS)

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

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