Movie Review – Ultras

TL;DR – An interesting film, exploring interesting issues, but does not quite come together   

Score – 3 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Warning – There is a lot of strobe lighting used in a sequence towards the end.

Ultras. Image Credit: Netflix.

Review

For me, sports, particularly football is something that I have only really gotten into recently. So it is something that I have tried to explore more, with what makes it tick, what drives it, and what drives people to love it. Well, today we have a film from Italy that explores all of this, but from a different perspective, that of the hardened supporters of the Italian football league.

To set the scene, we open in as a man walk through a crowd where everyone knows his name, as we wander through the town we arrive at a wedding, where flares are lit and everyone is having a good time. Which is of course when we cut to a montage of the more colourful moments in Italian football history, full of riots, flares, and a long rivalry between teams from Naples and Rome, or Napoli and Roma. It here where we see that behind the bravado is a sadness, a sadness of time gone by.  

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Movie Review – The Wound (Inxeba) (2017)

TL;DR The Wound sits on the precipice of culture, tradition, and masculinity, and shows the damage on inflexibility.     

Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

The Wound (Inxeba). Image Credit: Urucu Media.

Review

I have been spending the day brushing up on the many foreign films that I just haven’t been able to see, and the next stop on my trip around the world is South Africa. African cinema is one area where I need to explore more because this is the first film I have ever seen in Xhosa. With that in mind, let’s look at a film that explores the world of becoming a man in a very traditional society.

So to set the scene, throughout the year Xolani (Nakhane Touré) or X to his friends spends his time working and living alone in the city. However, once a year he comes back to the mountains to be a helper in the Ulwaluko ceremony. This is the Xhosa ceremony that marks the transition from boy to manhood. However, while he is there as a guide to help the initiates, X is also there for another reason, because it is the one time he gets to connect with Vija (Bongile Mantsai) a friend and secretly his romantic partner. This year X is being put in charge of Kwanda (Niza Jay Ncoyini) who is considered soft because he grew up in the city and does not care for tradition.

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