What it's about:
Exploring the devastation and wide rippling effects of addiction within a family home. The devastating news of a terminal illness brings one family together for the first time in many years. Dealing with imminent death, a father, mother and son must find the courage to forgive the terrible mistakes of the past. Set across three decades, the film tells a story of broken family relationships, the struggles of forgiveness and the emotional healing found in unconditional love.
What we thought:
There’s been a recent influx in serious Afrikaans films the last couple of months. From Ballade vir ‘n Enkeling to Dis Ek Anna to Sink to ‘n Man Soos My Pa. And nobody is complaining. The hard-hitting, gripping movies are a welcome relief after we’ve had to be satisfied with cheap thrills and cheesy musical numbers for too long. Finally local moviemakers are embracing variety and offering some excellent work that makes a trip to the cinema an absolute necessity.Sean Else’s latest offering, ‘n Man Soos My Pa, is a beautifully put together piece of local cinema that skillfully captures the intricacies of family life and the sometimes fragile relationship between a father and son.The film’s themes might be rooted in South African history but carries global appeal as sensitive subjects like alcoholism and abuse are delicately explored without even once being forced upon the viewer. From the script, to the cast, to the detail in every scene – ‘n Man Soos My Pa flawlessly tugs at the heartstrings in a film that’s a visual feast for the eyes. The movie’s main focus is the troubled relationship between Juan (Greg Kriek/Vilje Maritz/Vaughn Else) and his father, Attie (Albert Maritz/Neels van Jaarsveld). After not speaking to his father for 20 years Juan is forced to return home from London when his mother, Nakkie (Antoinette Louw/Sandra Prinsloo) suddenly falls ill. But returning to the home he grew up in brings back some dark memories for Juan who isn’t ready to reconcile with his father. Standout performances include Albert Maritz, Neels van Jaarsveld and Sandra Prinsloo. These local acting veterans bring with them a depth that you rarely get to see on the big screen locally. Albert and Neels, who play the same character, subtlety synced their performances down to even the smallest mannerism that resulted in an effortless flow between the present and the past. The talented Sandra Prinsloo was the link that perfectly tied the whole film together from beginning to end. Ultimately ‘n Man Soos My Pa is a proudly local production that deserves to be supported at the box office.
READ NEXT: Our interview with Neels van Jaarsveld
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