Monday, March 27, 2006

Tsotsi



I recently went to see this film, and this is long before it won an Oscar for best foreign film. Tsotsi is a really well made, and moving piece of cinema. The film is from South Africa, and it is about a young street kids life in the ghettos of south Africa. "Tsotsi" in South African means "gangster", and as I said the film is about this one boy who lives a life of crime in the streets. Through this film we see a world that is almost alien to us, yet familiar. There have been several films about gangs, and/or boys running in the streets of America, and all have their place, but what Tsotsi has is heart. In the film we meet a un-redeemable boy who does bad things, and at the end you are rooting for him. The ending is somewhat filled with some hope. The filmmaker did say they shot two endings, but when the film was finished the ending that is in the film seem to be warranted. The film is moving, and engrossing. It sucks you in, and you may think you know where the movie is headed, but it surprises you often. The film is in south African dialect, and is sub-titled, but in no way does it interfer with your understanding of the film. There is very little dialogue to begin with, and what dialogue there is is fully understandable. I'm always saddened when I hear that films with sub-titles don't do as well, and when an audience knows it is sub-titled they stay away. If you judge a film by whether it is sub-titled or not I feel that you are missing some of the best cinema produced. Sure Hollywood makes some good films, but it's presumcious to think that Hollywood is where the best films are made. As the saying goes "the worlds your oyster", and it would be a shame to miss great cinema because one thinks audience's won't understand the movie because of it's sub-titles.

Go see Tsotsi, and you won't regret it. Films like these only inspire me.

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