Channel24 interviews SA director, Oliver Schmitz, about his new film, Shepherds and Butchers

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2014-04-17 11:13
What it's about:

Jean and Sheryl are getting married. He’s Afrikaans. She’s Jewish. Their families are tense, and Lukas, the best man, has been on a drinking spree and he’s forgotten to confirm the band.

In order to keep the wedding on track, these friends are going to need to face some hard truths about the past and dig deep inside of themselves, all the while negotiating the inevitable chaos that large families bring to a wedding day.

Getting these two to the altar is going to make you laugh and cry.

What we thought:

Konfetti is the latest Afrikaans rom-com to hit theatres, and who doesn’t like a good wedding movie especially when it’s filled with disaster and drama. Based on Louw Venter’s play, The Best Man’s Speech, the story is about a good intentioned best man who tries to give his friends the ‘wedding of the year’.

In the opening scenes of the movie we are introduced to Lukas Basson (Louw Venter), a 20 something male that likes wild parties, binge drinking and finds it hard to stay faithful to his girlfriend. At a New Year’s Eve party his girlfriend Sheryl (Casey B Dolan) finds him in bed with another woman, Bianca (Kim Engelbrecht).

In an attempt to make Lukas jealous Sheryl shares a new year’s kiss with Jean (Nico Panagio), Lukas’s best friend. And so Jean and Sheryl’s relationship start. Months later wedding bells ring for the two and Lukas the best man has generously offered to arrange and pay for the shingdig. Your best friend marrying your ex and you’re the best man, totes awkies. There are undercurrents of unresolved issues with this seemingly happy threesome.

Things don’t run smoothly for Lukas as he encounters family tensions and cultural differences between Jean’s middle class Afrikaans family and Sheryl’s snobbish English Jewish family. Sheryl’s aunt and uncle who have flown in to deliver the ancestral ring have gone missing and the cherry on the cake is that the band has cancelled. In an attempt to salvage the band situation Lukas hires the first available band and the lead singer is Bianca (cue dramatic music). To cope with his stress levels Lukas goes on a drinking spree. And this dream wedding soon turns into a wedding nightmare.

Louw as the lead does an okay job. And while Dolan and Panagio are supposed to be the onscreen couple, we see very little of them together on screen, and even when they do appear together  their performances lack chemistry.

One thing that I found annoying was the cliché depiction of Sheryl’s aunt and uncle who have flown in from England to deliver the rings. They are the ‘classic’ English tourists who decide to detour from the planned itinerary to go on an in city safari where they encounter the locals. While this does provide some laughs I’m over these types of scenarios in local films.

Konfetti lives up to its title, it’s so light it falls flat in parts. While it is entertaining and dramatic it felt a bit a long with a predictable ending. If you’re in the mood for a light hearted rom-com that tries to follow the standard Hollywood recipe then this is for you.

A Stellenbosch wine farm is the perfect setting for a wedding movie, but this big wedding production turns out to be less than perfect.
Read more on:    nico panagio  |  casper de vries  |  konfetti  |  movies

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