Film/Stage Rating (Sep 27-Oct 3)

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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A scene from the new animated tale, Abominable.

FILMS NEW ON CIRCUIT IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS – FROM SEPTEMBER 27

PAVAROTTI ***
Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Spike Lee, Princess Diana, Stevie Wonder

A look at the life and work of opera legend. Luciano Pavarotti.

ABOMINABLE **
Director: Jill Culton and Todd Wilderman
Stars: Charlie Bennet, Albert Tsai

Animated adventure about a magical yeti that must return to his family.

THE ZOYA FACTOR **
Director: Abhishek Sharma
Stars: Sonam Kapoor, Dulquer Salmaan, Sanjay Kapoot

Based on Anuja Chauhan’s novel, this is a rom-com about an advertising agent and her relationship with the captain of team India, Nikhil Khoda.

TEEN SPIRIT **
Director: Max Minghella
Stars: Elle Fanning, Archie Madekwe

Violet is a shy teenager who dreams of escaping her small town and pursuing her passion to sing. With the help of an unlikely mentor, she enters a local singing competition that will test her integrity, talent and ambition. Driven by a pop-fuelled soundtrack, Teen Spirit is a spin on the Cinderella story.

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Cast members of the Downton Abbey film.

FILMS STILL ON CIRCUIT IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS

DOWNTON ABBEY ***
Director: Michael Engley
Stars: Maggue Smith, Imelda Stanton, Hugh Bonneville

The spinoff film from the hit British TV series picks up two years after the series ended in 2015, with the noble Yorkshire family and their faithful servants anticipating a visit by King George and Queen Mary. Expect scandal, kleptomania, an assassination attempt, a homosexual dalliance, and some secrets. A film laden with charm and nostalgia. (BS)

AD ASTRA ***
Director: James Gray
Stars: Brad Pitt. Liv Ullman,

Astronaut Roy McBride undertakes a mission across an unforgiving solar system to uncover the truth about his missing father and his doomed expedition that now, 30 years later, threatens the universe.

LOSING LERATO ***
Director: Sanele Zulu
Stars: Kagiso Modupe, Tshimillo Modupe, Samlea Tyebooi

A South African film about a young man who takes matters into his own hands by kidnapping his daughter after life, the law and the woman he once loved, separate him from him.

ANGEL HAS FALLEN ***
Director: Ric Roman Waugh
Stars: Gerard Butler, Piper Perabo, Morgan Freeman

Secret Service Agent Mike Banning is framed for the attempted assassination of the President and must evade his own agency and the FBI as he tries to uncover the real threat.

GOOD BOYS ***
Director:  Gene Stupnitsky
Stars: Jacob Tremblay, Keith L Williams, Brady Noon

Three 6th grade boys ditch school and embark on an epic journey while carrying accidentally stolen drugs, being hunted by teenage girls, and trying to make their way home in time for a long-awaited party.

ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD ***
Director: Quentin Tarantino
Stars: Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, Margot Robbie

A faded television actor and his stunt double strive to achieve fame and success in the film industry during the final years of Hollywood’s Golden Age in 1969 Los Angeles.

OVERCOMER ***
Director: Alex Kendrick
Stars: Alex Kendrick, Shari Rigby, Aryn Wright-Thompson

A high-school basketball coach volunteers to coach a troubled teen in long-distance running.

IT: CHAPTER 2 ***
Director: Andy Muschietti
Stars: Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, Bill Hader

Twenty-seven years after their first encounter with the terrifying clown, Pennywise, the Losers Club have grown up and moved away, until a devastating phone call brings them back.

HUSTLERS ***
Director: Lorene Scafaria
Stars: Constance Wu, Jennifer Lopez, Julia Stiles

Inspired by the viral New York Magazine article, Hustlers follows a crew of savvy former strip club employees who band together to turn the tables on their Wall Street clients.

DREAM GIRL **
Director: Raaj Shaandilyaa
Stars: Ayushmann Khurrana, Nushrat Bharucha, Annu Kapoor

The story of a man’s search for the ultimate dream girl.

THE ANGRY BIRDS MOVIE 2 **
Directors: Thurop vam Orman and John Rice
Stars: Jason Sudeikis, Josh Gad, Leslie Jones

An animated film in which the flightless birds and scheming green pigs take their feud to the next level.

RAMBO: LAST BLOOD **
Director: Adrian Grunberg
Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Paz Vega, Yvette Monreal

He-man Rambo must confront his past and unearth his ruthless combat skills to exact revenge in a final mission. Ho hum.

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.

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.

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A moment from Ladies Sing the Blues in Kloof

NOW ON STAGE IN DURBAN AND SURROUNDS

BURN THE FLOOR
(Rhumbelow Theatre, Tina’s Hotel, Beryldene Road, Kloof)

Positively ablaze with the sizzling sex appeal and phenomenal, fiery footwork of the ace team of dancers from various countries who comprise the cast of this unfailingly top-notch, international touring production. Back in South Africa for the fourth time since first touring here in 2011, the production is directed and choreographed by Peta Roby, and is once again a Ballroom and Latin American dance show on another level. Durban is the final stop of an international tour that has already visited Cape Town and Johannesburg, Tickets for the show, which runs until September 29, cost R285 throughout and booking is at Computicket. (BS)

KNOT AGAIN
(Rhumbelow Theatre, Cunningham Road, Umbilo)

Bryan Hiles, Darren King and Rowan Bartlett team in their fun, third show saluting Las Vegas hit-makers and others. Tickets cost R150 each (R130 for pensioners). Performances are every Friday and Saturday (at 8pm) and at 2pm on Sundays, until September 29. Book at Computicket or by calling Roland at 082 499 8646. (BS)

101 HITS
(Barnyard Theatre, Suncoast Casino, Durban)

More than 60 years of hit songs feature in this party show spotlighting10 singers, musicians and dancers. Watch how the cast perform 20 songs from 20 different artists in a six-minute medley and how they achieve their ultimate goal of performing 101 hit songs in one show! Running until 20, the show has 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)

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

A salute to the music of such stars as Yazoo, Depeche Mode, Human League, Adele, Wham, Bob Marley, 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)

LADIES SING THE BLUES
(Rhumbelow theatre, Tina’s Hotel, Beryldene Road, Kloof)

If you’re seeking a pleasant outing and favour a mixed bag of song – mostly old standards but also with more recent hits and fun mash-ups – you’re sure to find enjoyment in Ladies Sings the Blues. A light and breezy show which premiered at the recent Hilton Arts Festival at Hilton College, it is directed by Peter Mitchell and features four cheerful Pietermaritzburg vocalists – Erin Fourie, Tanya Nicolson, Grace Botha and Helen Vermaak. The production has been lengthened for its short run at the Rhumbelow Theatre in Kloof, where it is presented over two halves and will have final performances at 8pm on Friday (September 27) and 2pm on Sunday (September 29). The team, with Vermaak and Botha doing a fine job alternating at the black grand piano on stage, and Fourie often providing accompaniment on acoustic guitar, offers a wide variety of blues and jazz, covering a century of music. Entertianin, some hammy moments and forced humour notwithstanding. . Book at Computicket or by calling Roland at 082 499 8646. (BS)

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


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