How to wear denim this summer
MUSIEK VIR DIE AGTERGROND
Director: Sallas de Jager
CAST: John-Henry Opperman, Lizelle de Klerk, Ian Roberts, Brumilda van Rensburg, Terence Bridgett, Neil Sandilands
RUNNING TIME: 124 minutes
This is quite a difficult film to rate because it is made with such obvious love and care. Yet the story and the casting lets them down. You cannot allow your personal feelings to come into play. I suspect that’s what happened with this first-time director. He was part of the producing team of Roepman and Verraaiers, both better-than- average Afrikaans movies.
But some of the decisions made here just don’t make sense. In real life, John Henry Opperman might be a fabulous muso/singer, but he is not a pop idol, a Bobby van Jaarsveld look-alike, which is what the film is trying to imply. The story revolves around a young singer whose dreams are hijacked for fame and money. If your lead guy doesn’t fit the image, it doesn’t play. Image is what it is about for this one. If Van Rensburg’s producer spots the young singer out of nowhere, it doesn’t fly because he doesn’t fit the image. Even after a makeover, he still looks like the boy next door who is better suited to indie music that will have people listening rather than screaming.
That’s the main stumbling block. Add to that a storyline that features strongly, the Van Rensburg character’s problematic daughter, who never makes an appearance, and the lack of chemistry between the two love birds, the singer (Opperman) and his girl Sera (De Klerk, who won an award for her acting at the Silwerskermfees), makes the relationship difficult to buy.
Good acting and production don’t get to make a movie. It has to begin with the story. If that doesn’t work or has gaps and the characters aren’t believable, it won’t pull you through.
The indulgent length of the movie drags it down even deeper. The mistakes in this one could all have been avoided if the director had taken a long, hard look at his decisions. Brutal is what one has to be when making movies, especially if they’re personal.
Justin Bieber is probably the benchmark for cute young singers. Opperman might have many talents, but being Bieber is not one of them.
If you liked Pretville or Liefling you might like this one.