Movies out today: It's all about the lekker local flavour

It's predominantly about South Africa at local cinemas today, with 2 of the week's 3 new releases centred on the Rainbow Nation, past and present.

Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom:
It's been several years in the making, but finally Nelson Mandela's epic 630-page tome of an autobiography is making the leap to the big screen with this 2-and-a-half hour biopic. "Could he be any cooler?" Idris Elba plays the iconic activist turned South African president, while Naomie Harris is wife Winnie Mandela.

Evidently you won't find an exploration of life in Apartheid Era South Africa in Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom. That's according to Nick's review at The Movies. What you will find though in this flawed, heavy-handed biopic are magnificent, Oscar-worthy performances, particularly by Elba. Currently 70% Fresh on review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes.

Schuks! Your Country Needs You:
What would the December holidays be without another Leon Schuster comedy? This time the funnyman joins forces with regular collaborator Alfred Ntombela, along with Rob van Vuuren and  Lare Birk for a series of hidden camera pranks played on the unsuspecting South African public.

If you enjoy this kind of thing, you're sure to lap up Shuks! Your Country Needs You. This said, Zoe in her review was unimpressed by this latest formula cash-in, calling the gags tired for the most part and sometimes even mean-spirited.

Before Midnight:
Screening in limited release is this romantic drama that continues one of the unlikeliest acclaimed film series of all time, spanning almost 20 years. Following their original meeting on a train in Before Sunrise, and their reconnecting in Before Sunset, Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy sit today at a crossroads in their long-term relationship.

Evidently Before Midnight is for adult cinemagoers who don't mind watching a film that is essentially one long conversation about life and love. This intelligent, charming and "real" movie is worth it though (if you've watched the rest of the series). A massively impressive 98% Fresh.


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