She searched for a home, she searched for love. Confronted by Apartheid and a father who was Minister of censorship. With men like Jack Cope and Andre Brink she found much love, but no home. In his first speech to the South African Parliament Nelson Mandela read her poem "The Dead Child of Nyanga" and addresses her as one of the finest poets of South Africa. Written by
A middle aged writer rescues a young woman from drowning near the shores of South Africa. Although he is much older, they fall in love right there and then and soon some obvious complications ensue. There is hardly a likable or interesting character in this wandering historical drama about the poet Ingrid Jonker (Carice van Houten). It deals primarily with the mentally troubled writer and her precarious relationships with men, including her father (Rutger Hauer) who is a member of the apartheid regime she strongly opposes.
The film never picks up any speed and the absence of a discernible plot line or a compelling narrative makes for a very pallid viewing experience. Hauers script is particularly one-note but the same could be said of van Houten who seemed to be out of her depth in the role of a frustrated and depressed young woman trying to get her voice heard through rebellious poetry. Liam Cunningham fares a lot better as one of the two love interests and produces the only sympathetic character of the film.
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