South Africa, post-apartheid: WONDERBOY, a wiry 11-year-old, is trying to survive on the streets of crime-ridden Johannesburg. KOBUS, a former soldier of the apartheid army, can't forget ...
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South Africa, post-apartheid: WONDERBOY, a wiry 11-year-old, is trying to survive on the streets of crime-ridden Johannesburg. KOBUS, a former soldier of the apartheid army, can't forget the "good old days" when he was "somebody" - a man honoured for his bravery. Now he's hoping for something to make life worth it again. KOBUS's takes on a job as a travelling delivery man. His pick-up loaded to the brim with tins of RAINBOW WAX - to shine up the nation's furniture, KOBUS meets up with WONDERBOY at a traffic intersection, where the boy eagerly cleans the car's windscreen, hoping for some change. Gangster STIX arrives on the scene, waving a gun - he wants to kill Wonderboy. The boy has only one chance: to leap into KOBUS's car, urging him to drive like hell because he is about to be "car-jacked". KOBUS buys it and they race off, shaking the gunmen off their tail. KOBUS wants to get rid of the "little gangster" as soon as he can. But he needs someone to guard the car - and he is not much... Written by
"Malunde" is an odd-fellows buddy/road movie that features a disaffected middle-aged white South African and an 11 year-old black child of the streets.
It kicks off in confusion and excitement, builds steam and pays off with a terrific emotional wallop at the end.
It features incandescent performances by the two leads, on an impromptu backroad journey from Johannesburg to Capetown, in varied settings and difficult situations. A sense of menace hovers throughout, though the tenuous bond formed between the two principals grows stronger over time.
It has a fabulous score of South African music and is a joy to look at (gloriously filmed in wide-screen by Wim Wenders' DP). The audience loved it as I did.
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