Policemen Ali Sokhela and Brian Epkeen investigate the brutal murder of a young white woman, apparently provoked by the availability of a new illegal drug and somehow connected to the disappearance of black street children.
As a child, Ali Neuman narrowly escaped being murdered by Inkatha, a militant political party at war with Nelson Mandela's African National Congress. Only he and his mother survived the carnage of those years. But as with many survivors, the psychological scars remain. Today, Ali is chief of the homicide branch of the South African police in Cape Town. One of his staff is Brian Epkeen, a free-wheeling white officer whose family was originally involved in the establishment of apartheid but who works well with Neuman. Together they have to deal with crime that inevitably exists in sprawling areas of un- and under- employed people, crime exacerbated by gangs, both local and from other parts of Africa. Their job gets even more difficult when the corpses of two young women are found. A new evil has been introduced in the city and a new drug has been introduced to its residents, including both murder victims. At the chaotic crossroads where brutality and modernization collide, the echoes of... Written by
This is a very good movie. There, I said it. Let me say it again: this is a very good movie.
If I can identify one weak point, then I will point to the script that at times introduces some plot elements that rapidly fill in the blanks to advance the story. However, the script more than makes up for that minor problem by revealing complexity to the Whitaker and Bloom characters in a subtle way that makes us truly care about the two cops they portray.
Whitaker is very good, establishing a character then staying true to what he presents initially. If you like watching the mature Forest Whitaker do his thing then you will enjoy this movie.
However, to me this is Orlando Bloom's movie to carry, and he scores big time. If you are one of those that enjoys Orlando then this is a movie for you. All of that time he has spent adding to his bank account with fluffy roles has also brought him to this point where he can truly pull off a major role with skill.
Zulu is set in modern day South Africa and the portrait of that nation isn't pretty at all. Further, it is pretty easy to see that the social problems the film deals with are not only current but real and accurate. Zulu isn't just a who-done-it, but a powerful indictment of the causes of the subject crime embedded deep in 20th century history.
Like all good cop movies there is some redemption at the end so fear not in the middle, if you find yourself a little depressed. Stick it out and you will feel a little redemption yourself, maybe a little hope.
I see that the budget was $20 million and I think the producers got a great deal of worth for their investment. Problematic I guess is distribution of a cop film set in South Africa with some pretty harsh elements, at least to American audiences. Fortunately, for a few bucks in the near future you can watch it online.
Go see it if it at all sounds like your cup of tea, I promise you that you will enjoy it.
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