The screenplay has been written, auditions have been done, repetitions have begun and costumes are being made … because the long-awaited brand new stage production by well-known entertainer, Melissa Massyn, is heading to the stage soon.
UNWRITE ME, which she co-wrote with Eunice Stoltz, was created to give young talent a platform where they can not only learn more about the acting industry, but also get the chance to perform in front of large audiences.
This concert, which combines acting, singing and dancing, tells the tale of Abi (Annette Havenga) who is in a constant battle with the voices in her head. She is a forty-year-old writer who tries to find herself through her stories. It helps her to come to the conclusion that she will never truly experience contentment if she does not stop making enemies of her friends, family, career and her subconscious.
“Audiences can look forward to a highly entertaining show and will definitely be able to relate to the main character and learn a lot from her,” the actress reveals. “The actors are truly talented and I am very grateful for each of them.”
Melissa, who is best-known for her roles in Hoofmeisie, Agent 2000 and Erfsondes, feels that it is a nice challenge for her to be behind the scenes as a director and writer, as it gives her exposure to new aspects of the entertainment industry that she has never dealt with before. It is also the first time that she does not star in a production that she is part of and she looks forward to sharing the talent and skills of her entire team (Annette Havenga, Eunice Stoltz, Almarie Coetzee, Rynhardt Strydom, Havard Koegelenberg, Ree Brink, Chanelle Matthee , Suné Brink and André Myburgh) with the rest of the country.
“As an artist, it is very important to stay busy and to keep creating. That is the main reason why I decided to launch this new project. I am looking forward to being part of a group of people who share my goals, and also to teach upcoming entertainers what it takes to create a theatre production from scratch,” she explains.
The opening concert will take place on Saturday, 30 November 2019, at the Corpus Christi Congregation in the Cape. Doors will open at 6pm and the show will start promptly at 7pm. There is only a limited number of seats available, which can be booked in advance (until 28 November) at R85 per person. Tickets can also be purchased at the door on night at R100 per person. A selected group of celebrities and members of the media will also be attending this special event.
Although there will only be one performance this year, festivalgoers can look forward to seeing the play at festivals around the country in 2020. According to Massyn, a videographer is also capturing the process on camera and she plans to broadcast it as a web series on her own YouTube channel.
Melissa Massyn is a well-known local actress, television personality, videographer, social media specialist, graphic designer, master of ceremonies and motivational speaker. She has been working in the entertainment industry since 2011 and become famous for her role as Susan in The Film Factory’s film, Hoofmeisie. Since then she has starred in numerous films, television shows, short films, stage productions and television adverts. This versatile star also does regular voice overs for radio advertisements, creates video content for businesses, hosts drama workshops on a regular basis and also gives drama classes on request.
With UNWRITE ME, she not only introduces a brand-new side of herself to the public, but also gives others the opportunity to be noticed.
Experience a night out in Ibiza without the expense of an air ticket. Limitless is going all out this summer with a celebration like no other. Inspired by the Ibiza party culture, there is a whole new world to discover. Ibiza Meets South Africa is making an entrance with this exciting new concept on the 9th November at Nicci Beach.
This powerhouse DJ’s line-up includes: Household Funk featuring Justin Chalice, Austin Cassim, Shane-Ohh, Stallion, Haylo, John Lyra and Ray Squared.
“If you have never had an opportunity to experience Ibiza, we are going to give you a glimpse by showcasing their music and scenes for only one magical night,” Comments Limitless Life director Bianca Bosnjak.
Expect a magical night with a stellar line-up of DJ’s, fire dancers, games, glamour girls, great music, stilts, go-go dancers and much more.
Early bird tickets are available through Howler. Door fee is R120 before 22h00 thereafter; tickets will be available from R150. VIP tables includes: entrance for four people, one Hubbly bubbly, one bottle and twelve mixes for R1400. Book your tables to avoid disappointment and contact 062 349 7747.
Doors open at 20h30. Rights of admissions are reserved and strictly no under 18’s.
On M-Net & M-Net HD , Sunday 13 October 2019 at 19:00 & again on M-Net Plus 1  at 20:00
BEHIND THE SCENES > ACTION
Inside the JMPD’s Crack Crimefighting Squad
With its bright lights and bustling business districts, Johannesburg remains one of the most attractive cities in the world, but drug dealers, hijackers and armed criminals are trying to take over these streets. Now, the JMPD’s K9 unit is fighting back, working to prevent criminals from gaining the upper hand. Leaving their homes and families to patrol the city’s streets every night, dedicated officers are primed for any and all situations. Carte Blanche rides shotgun with this elite unit.
Millions of South Africans are exposed to radioactive radon gas in their homes and workplaces every day, as the naturally occurring gas escapes through cracks in the earth. The second leading cause of lung cancer in several countries, radon breaks down and when inhaled, decaying atoms emit alpha radiation that can damage the DNA. There are no safe levels of radon concentration. The United States Environmental Protection Agency emphasises any radon exposure has some risk of causing lung cancer. Carte Blanche investigates why South Africa has no regulations to protect against radon accumulation in the home and what you can do to test your home and prevent lung cancer.
From contact centres to production lines, artificial intelligence in the workplace can bring about great efficiency, faster services, and quick turnaround times for customers. For business owners, AI helps eliminate human error, waste and costs. But for workers, the fourth industrial revolution spells great unease and uncertainty. Carte Blanche unpacks the prospects for employees when automation threatens jobs in a country with nearly 30% unemployment.
Producer: Julian Sun Presenter: Masa Kekana
A Defence against Allergies?
An asthma attack, the dreaded breakout of hives, and near-death experiences – that’s what many people suffering from food allergies risk every day with every meal. Research shows that high antibiotic exposure, environmental changes, genetics and fast food ingestion are just some of the factors which can cause allergies – but is there another way to prevent them early on in life? Now, results from a ground-breaking South African study focusing on the impact of exposure to a rural environment and farm animals, could hold the answers to reducing the prevalence of food allergies.
The Sugar-daddy Theatre Company is back with their new play, ‘Blueberry Toast’ coming soon to Artscape Arena from the 15th to the 25th October 2019.
Ever wonder what evil lurks in the heart of suburbia?
Get ready for this revenge comedy by Yale graduate Mary Laws. ‘Blueberry Toast’ puts the “dys” in family dysfunction!
On the surface, Barb (Marlisa Doubell) and Walt (Gavin Werner) may seem like your typical all-American suburban couple with two precocious children Jack (Daniel Wolsen/Jagger Cooper-Doubell) and Jill (Nikita Latimer/Chloé Gardner) but perhaps the demands to uphold their dream family are taking their toll. This dynamic cast is led by award-winning director Sue Diepeveen.
Experience the darker side of ‘happily ever after’ with this modern-day revenge comedy.
Duration: 1 hour Dates: 15 October (preview) – 26 October 2019 Time: Evenings 19:30 / Sunday 16:00 / Saturday 16:00 Venue: Artscape Arena, DF Malan Street, Foreshore, Cape Town Tickets: R90 via Computicket Cast: Marlisa Doubell, Gavin Werner, Nikita Latimer, Daniel Wolson, Jagger Cooper-Doubell, Chloé Gardner Director: Sue Diepeveen Fight choreographer: Richard Lothian
Ageing hitman Henry Brogan (Will Smith – Aladdin, Suicide Squad) has his sights set on retiring, but as these type of stories go, he agrees to “just one more”. While on this mission, he encounters Danny (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), and the two are soon embroiled in a game of cat and mouse with governments, and Junior (also played by Will Smith).
While Gemini Man is directed by Ang Lee, the film pales in comparison to any of his other works, lacking any cinematic shots, editing that feels like a student music video, and just not living up to what anyone would expect.
Gemini Man has very little going for it. One feels inclined to root for the bad guy. The action sequences feel dull, and not because the screen brightness at Ster Kinekor, Cavendish in Cape Town is woefully too dark, but but there is just no exciting action to speak of. An action file that is sorely lacking, where it counts.
Character development, there is none. Each person on screen feels like a template, downplayed to the level of a light hum, instead of an all out action star.
Gemini Man is a film with a bunch of missed opportunity, rather than a satisfying story. One comes away feeling robbed of a few hours of fun. And it almost feels like no one really tried.
The film opens 11 October 2019, in South African cinemas.
The timeless story of a parent dedicated to a child above all else is one everyone can relate to. Set in a post-pandemic, dystopian landscape following a plague that killed nearly all the world’s females, director Casey Affleck’s LIGHT OF MY LIFE is a narrative feature film based on the Oscar-winning actor’s own script, which mixes a survivalist drama with a coming-of-age story.
Explaining the rationale behind the film, Affleck says: “This is a very personal movie for me. I began writing this story a decade ago. As my children aged, the experience of being a parent changed. The story I was telling changed. After going through a divorce, the story took its final shape. Despite all the science fiction, this is a story about being a single parent grieving the loss of a nuclear family.”
The film takes place in a spookily deserted landscape, where a father and daughter, in an attempt to survive, live in a tent and forage for rations in the woods. Keeping to themselves, the loving character Dad (Affleck) teaches his 11-year-old daughter, who is somehow immune to the ‘female plague’, about ethics, history, morality, and how to live off the land.
But a chance encounter threatens the precautions he has set up, risking the refuge he has created. In a world now populated only by men, he tries desperately to protect his daughter Rag (newcomer Anna Pniowsky), while honouring and empowering the young woman she is becoming and reminding her of how much her mother (played in short flashbacks by Elisabeth Moss) adored her.
For her safety, and because it’s impossible to tell the good men from the bad, Dad has chopped off Rag’s hair and dressed her in boy’s clothing, passing her off as his son and staying largely away from towns and what’s left of population centres.
The relationship between father and daughter is the beating heart of LIGHT OF MY LIFE and the chemistry between Affleck and Pniowsky is best sampled through their father-daughter exchanges, particularly as they talk in their weathered orange tent at night. The interior of the tent, lit by small lamps, accentuate the intimacy and rapport they have.
These scenes punctuate LIGHT OF MY LIFE, highlighting what’s most important to these characters – the parent-child bond and the sense of security they’ve created. There is genuine affection and empathy for and between father and daughter, and a shared love for stories about the world as it was and as they’d like it to be.
A wonderfully understated performer, Affleck does excellent work. Talking about his performance, he says one of the keys to figuring out who Dad was within the story was making sure the connection between parent and child felt real to him as a parent of two kids.
“Strangely, the first thing I wanted to find was a believable dynamic of parental irritation, because it’s an expression of love that, in a way, is less obvious. Sometimes, when your kid is doing something dangerous, you’re worried about them, so your love is in a different gear. There are a few moments in the film when Dad loses his temper with Rag, and I wanted those scenes to be right, so it’s understood that these two people love and care about each other in a realistic way.
“Some of the other keys were trying to balance two sides of the character. Dad is confident that he is totally capable of taking care of Rag, protecting her, raising her, fending for the two of them, but also has a deep feeling of loneliness and panic in him. To be able to put all of that into the same character in the same scene was interesting.”
He also has a minimalist approach behind the camera, which is supported by cinematographer Adam Arkapaw, who manages to compose a series of shots that make even the bleakest locations seem somehow beautiful. His colour palette of greys, pale whites and browns is controlled, and the landscapes vibrate with menace, in stark contrast to their beauty. Daniel Hart’s score is melancholy and ominous. Together, all these elements ensure that there is a quiet sense of grace and humanity that shines through in LIGHT OF MY LIFE.
Just as the father finds it nearly impossible to explain the world to his daughter, the film resists explaining everything to its audience. As humanity is collapsing, the shadow of real-life anxiety grows, and the film taps into the primal fears of people, particularly parents, everywhere.
“I wish I could take credit for wanting to comment on things or depicting a world that parallels, in some ways, the point we’re at now. In truth, I didn’t have any social commentary in mind when I was making it,” says Affleck. “But one reason I love the arts is it’s a way of talking about our world in a not-so-literal way; those things may have found their way into the movie, but what I was making was a story about learning to find a balance between both keeping the world out and letting the world in, keeping your kids protected and letting them go, protecting them while preparing them to protect themselves.”
LIGHT OF MY LIFE is, at its heart, a portrait of a father and his daughter, and what he will do in order to keep her safe. It is a beautiful dramatic thriller that is an observation on parental love in broken times and the instability of society, and a compelling parable of letting go.
LIGHT OF MY LIFE is distributed by Filmfinity (Pty) Ltd. and will be released in South African cinemas on 18 October 2019.
Die tydlose verhaal van ’n ouer, wat heeltemal toegewy is aan ’n kind, is een waarmee almal kan vereenselwig. Regisseur, Casey Affleck, se LIGHT OF MY LIFE, is ’n narratiewe rolprent wat afspeel in tydperk nadat ’n plaag amper almal in die wêreld uitgewis het. Dit is gebaseer op die Oscar-bekroonde akteur se eie draaiboek, wat drama vermeng met die storie van ’n kind en ouer se reis na genesing.
Affleck verduidelik die betekenis agter die fliek as volg: “Dit is ’n baie persoonlike film vir my. Ek het hierdie verhaal ’n dekade gelede begin skryf. Soos wat my kinders ouer geword het, het my ervaring van ouer wees ook verander. Die storie wat ek vertel het, het verander. Na ’n egskeiding het die verhaal sy finale vorm aangeneem. Buiten vir al die wetenskapfiksie, is hierdie ’n storie van ’n enkelouer wat treur oor die verlies van ’n kernfamilie.”
Die film speel af op ’n spoggerige, verlate landskap, waar ’n pa en dogter in ’n tent woon en in die woud kos moet soek om te oorleef. Om hulle veilig te probeer hou, vermy die liefdevolle pa (Affleck) kontak met ander mense en leer hy sy 11-jarige dogter, wat op een of ander manier immuun is teen die ‘vroulike plaag’, oor etiek, geskiedenis, moraliteit en hoe om van die land af te leef.
Maar ’n toevallige ontmoeting bedreig dié voorsorgmaatreëls wat hy opgestel het, en plaas die toevlug wat hy geskep het, in gevaar. In ’n wêreld wat nou net deur mans bevolk is, probeer hy desperaat om sy dogter Rag (nuweling Anna Pniowsky) te beskerm, terwyl hy terselfdertyd probeer om die jong vrou wat sy word, te eer en te bemagtig. Hy word ook deur middel van terugflitse daaraan herinner hoe versot haar ma (Elisabeth Moss) op haar was.
Ter wille van haar veiligheid, en omdat dit onmoontlik is om tussen goeie en slegte mans te onderskei, sny hy haar hare af en moet sy mansklere dra en vermy hulle dorpe en stede sover as wat hulle kan.
Die verhouding tussen pa en dogter is die hartklop van LIGHT OF MY LIFE en die besonderse band tussen Affleck en Pniowsky word veral weerspieël deur die tonele wanneer hulle alleen is en in die aand in hulle oranje tent gesels. Die binnekant van die tent, wat verlig word met klein lampies, beklemtoon die intimiteit en verhouding wat hulle het. Daar is opregte toegeneentheid en empatie vir mekaar, en ’n gedeelde liefde vir verhale oor die wêreld soos dit was en soos wat hulle dit graag wil hê.
Affleck vertolk sy rol uitstekend. As jy hom oor sy toneelspel uitvra, verklap hy dat dit baie belangrik was dat hy die opregte band tussen ouer en kind moes voel, ten einde sy karakter met oortuiging te kon vertolk.
“Die eerste aspek wat ek wou vind, was die geloofwaardige dinamiek van die ouerskapsituasie, want dit is nie ’n liefdesverhouding wat voor-die-handliggend is nie. Wanneer jou kind iets gevaarlik doen, is jy bekommerd oor hulle en daarom is jou liefde op daardie oomblik in ’n ander fase. Daar is ’n paar oomblikke in die film wanneer die pa sy humeur verloor met sy dogter, en ek wou hê dat die tonele reg moes wees, sodat dit die boodskap duidelik kon oordra dat hierdie twee mense op ’n realistiese manier vir mekaar omgee,” sê hy.
“Dit was ook belangrik om beide kante van my karakter te balanseer. Aan die een kant, is Pa vol selfvertroue dat hy in staat is om vir Rag te sorg, haar te beskerm en haar groot te maak. Hy is egter ook eensaam en voel baie keer paniekerig. Om alles in een karakter te verweef op die grootskerm, was baie interessant.”
Hy het ook ’n minimalistiese benadering agter die kamera, wat ondersteun word deur die kinematograaf, Adam Arkapaw, wat daarin slaag om ’n reeks skote te verfilm wat selfs die slegste omstandighede op die een of ander manier mooi te laat lyk. Sy kleurpalet van grys, wit en bruin word beheer, en die landskappe vibreer van dreigement, in skrille kontras met hulle skoonheid. Daniel Hart se musiek is hartseer en onheilspellend. Saam verseker al hierdie elemente dat daar ’n rustige gevoel van genade en menslikheid is wat deurskyn in LIGHT OF MY LIFE.
Net soos wat die pa dit bykans onmoontlik vind om die wêreld aan sy dogter te verklaar, kan die fliek ook nie heeltemal alles aan die kyker verduidelik nie. Namate die mensdom besig is om in duie te stort, groei die skaduwee van angs in die werklike lewe, en die rolprent werk die ergste vrese van mense, veral ouers, oral in.
“Ek wens dat ek die krediet daarvoor kon neem dat dit my bedoeling was om kommentaar te lewer op die situasie in die wêreld, maar eintlik was dit glad nie die idee toe ek die rolprent gemaak het nie,” sê Affleck. “Dit is egter een van die redes hoekom en so baie van die kunste hou, omdat dit ons in staat stel om op ’n indirekte manier wel sekere kwessies aan te spreek. Alhoewel hierdie dinge hulle weg in die fliek in gevind het, wou ek ’n storie skep daaroor om balans te vind tussen om die wêreld uit te hou en die wêreld in te laat, jou kinders te beskerm en hulle te laat gaan, en hulle te beskerm terwyl hulle voorberei om hulself te beskerm.”
LIGHT OF MY LIFE is in sy kern ’n portret van ’n pa en sy dogter en wat hy sal doen om haar veilig te hou. Dit is ’n pragtige dramatiese riller, wat kommentaar lewer oor ouerliefde in gebroke tye en die onstabiliteit van die samelewing. Dit dra ook die aangrypende boodskap dat jy die een of ander tyd moet laat gaan.
LIGHT OF MY LIFE word versprei deur Filmfinity (Edms) Bpk. en sal by plaaslike bioskope begin draai op 18 Oktober 2019.
On M-Net & M-Net HD , Sunday 6 October 2019 at 19:00 & again on M-Net Plus 1  at 20:00
Claire Mawisa: “I know we have drought fatigue and we’re tired of hearing the stories… But people’s lives are at risk here in the Northern Cape. It is heart-breaking, as I feel like these are the forgotten people!”
INVESTIGATIONS > ACTION
Karoo Drought at Crisis Point
Known to be arid and unforgiving at the best of times, the worst of times has now beset the Central Karoo. The rains have come for most drought-stricken areas across the country, but in this crucial sheep-producing area, it’s been six dry years and counting. 60 000 workers in the region have lost their jobs. Carte Blanche revisits the towns where the economy is collapsing under the weight of destitute workers and their families seeking refuge, the only meal many children get is provided by the schools’ feeding scheme as farmers and the town businesses are forced to retrench workers.
Producer: Liz Fish Presenter: Claire Mawisa
School of Shattered Dreams
For a number of girls and boys attending a well-known dance academy in Gauteng, dreams of making it big on the stage have turned to dust as they say they were exposed to a sex grooming ring in the school. Speaking out for the first time, three of the learners and their mothers reveal how the allegations of grooming and assault were reported to police. Carte Blanche investigates.
Producer: Kate Barry Presenter: Masa Kekana
EMPOWERING > ENLIGHTENING
A Defence against Allergies?
An asthma attack, the dreaded breakout of hives, and near death experiences – that’s what many people suffering from food allergies risk every day with every meal. Research shows that high antibiotic exposure, environmental changes, genetics and fast food ingestion are just some of the factors which can cause allergies – but is there another way to prevent them early on in life? Now,results from a ground-breaking South African study focusing on the impact of exposure to a rural environment and farm animals, could hold the answers to reducing the prevalence of food allergies.
They stood at the precipice of history, a rare opportunity to pay tribute to one of the greatest historical events of our time – the moment the Apollo 11 lifted off from earth, destination, the moon. Now, exactly 50 years later, the One More Orbit international flight crew which included South African Jeremy Ascough took on the adventure of a lifetime, setting out to break the Guinness World Record for the fastest circumnavigation of the earth via the north and south poles. It was a feat attempted by others twice before, but this time, the team intended to finally obliterate the record. With a staggering 54 hours and 7 minutes to beat, could they do it?
In this, the fifth big screen outing of the infamous foe of Batman, we are lured into the world of Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix) as he spirals toward a character transition, from simple man to crazed merchant of evil.
This is a gritty film, far removed from the likes of previous films starring Cesar Romero, Jack Nicholson, Mark Hamill, Heath Ledger, and Jared Leto. While the film is a lot darker than any previous story featuring Joker, there are to a more or lesser degree, aspects of those appearances present. Most notably, the strongest being that of Heath Ledger’s Clown Prince.
Joker follows the inherent personality transition of Arthur Fleck to The Joker, played out through a social commentary on society, and its blatant disregard for those who are different or of a lower status. With many ideas and story aspects being familiar, there are, at the same time, many differences. Starting with Joker’s origin, and including a look at the politics that would come to shape the city, known for its birth of The Dark Knight.
There are many subtle, and not so subtle, influences from both popular and classic culture present in the film. Charlie Chaplin’s film Modern Times provides both visuals in many scenes and story context to the character of Joker, something that is sure to thrill any film student or lover of the black and white silent films of yesteryear. The references to The King of Comedy as part of a sub-plot to the film, serve both as a homage and exposition to the state of Arthur’s mind, acting as a thermometer for the viewer, allowing one to judge just how far along the road he is from Arthur to Joker, playing out on a live comedy show, presented by Murray Franklin, placing the cherry on the top by being played by Robert De Niero who played Rupert Pupkin in the 1982 film.
Joker is a masterpiece of story layers, character driven by a talented cast. As we delve deeper into the underbelly of Gotham City, lamenting both status and status-quo, allowing the viewer to slip into a mindset of indifference. The film is an engrossing journey, with few pauses allowing for thought or analysis. This is a film that sets out to share a story, and it impresses, greatly. While the violence and subject matter may not be for everyone, it is more certainly a film one must see, and no doubt will be one of the top films in quite some time. Great film, cinematography, acting, character and story – one would seldom want more from a cinematic narrative.
Joker opens in South African cinemas on 4 October 2019