A scene from "Rage". Picture: Supplied
A scene from "Rage". Picture: Supplied

5 best local hits to stream on Showmax this weekend

By Entertainment Writer Time of article published Apr 12, 2020

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With the weather set to be chilly for most of Mzansi this weekend and the national lockdown still in place, here are some local offerings on Showmax you can stream.

ZOG 

Zog is the keenest but clumsiest pupil in his class at Dragon School, where he longs to win a gold star as he learns how to fly, roar and breathe fire. 

He keeps meeting a kindly young girl who patches up his bumps and bruises, but can she help him with his trickiest school assignment yet: capturing a princess?
 
Animated in Cape Town by Triggerfish and produced by the UK’s Magic Light Pictures, the 27-minute animated short captures the magic of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s bestselling picture book, with an all-star voice cast including the likes of Kit Harington, Sir Lenny Henry and Tracey Ullman. It’s co-directed by multi-award-winning South African Daniel Snaddon (Stick Man) and two-time Oscar nominee Max Lang (The Gruffalo and Room On The Broom).  

 

RAGE 

In "Rage", a group of school-leavers descend on a tiny coastal town for a celebration of their freedom. Roxy, Sihle, Kyle, Leon, Tamsyn and Neo party on the beach and drink themselves silly every night. The townsfolk, Hermien and her son Albert, are welcoming – to welcoming. 

During a psychedelic trip on the beach, the friends witness a disturbing birth ritual, which could be a hallucination, or not. Soon fertility figurines start to appear at random places, and what is supposed to be the best holiday of their lives turns to horror as the teenagers are picked off one by one. 

Nicole Fortuin, whose previous film, Flatland, opened the Berlin Panorama, stars as Tamsyn, with "The Girl From St Agnes’" breakout stars Jane de Wet (Moffie, Still Breathing) and Tristan de Beer (Alles Malan, Doctor Who) as Roxy and Kyle.


NOUGHTS + CROSSES 

“Over 700 years ago, the Aprican Empire invaded Europe. Aprica colonised the continent and reached as far as Albion. Albion has been under Aprican rule ever since.” 

So begins "Noughts + Crosses", a controversial six-part BBC One series based on Malorie Blackman’s multi-award-winning novel. South African Masali Baduza ("Trackers") and BAFTA winner Jack Rowan (Born To Kill, Peaky Blinders) play Sephy and Callum, two star-crossed lovers in the tradition of Romeo and Juliet. 

Sephy is the privileged daughter of the Home Secretary, Kamal Hadley, while Callum’s mother, Meggie, is the Hadleys’ housekeeper. While Sephy and Callum grew up together, they may as well have lived in different worlds. Shot largely in Cape Town, the series also stars Paterson Joseph and South African actress Bonnie Mbuli .

 

A UNITED KINGDOM 

The year before South Africa formalised Apartheid in 1948, King Seretse Khama (two-time Golden Globe nominee David Oyelowo) of the neighbouring British protectorate of Bechuanaland married a British white woman, Ruth Williams (Oscar nominee Rosamund Pike). 

This upsets both their families, not to mention the governments of South Africa, South West Africa, Rhodesia and the United Kingdom, who try to declare Khama unfit to rule. The opening film of the 2016 BFI London Film Festival, A United Kingdom is more than just a heart-warming true story of love overcoming all odds: it’s also the story of Botswana’s independence, its transition to democracy, and its fight to retain the rights to any diamonds found within its borders.

"A United Nation" also stars South Africa's Vusi Kunene and Terry Pheto. 

 

FRANK & FEARLESS 

When rhino calf Reini is orphaned by poachers, 10-year-old Fearless (Themba Ntuli from Meerkat Maantuig) decides to take action. 

Teaming up with Sonny Frank (played by Leon  Schuster), a lovable and possibly certifiable rogue, Fearless, Reini and a big black dog set out to find justice for Africa’s last remaining rhinos, gangster-style. Their quest goes horribly wrong when they run into a platoon of merciless poachers but fortunately Africa itself seems to be on their side.


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