6.2/10
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28 user 56 critic

Skoonheid (2011)

Unrated | | Drama | 5 October 2012 (USA)
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Portrait of a closeted gay husband/father living a life of quiet middle-aged desperation who becomes fixated on a friend's handsome collegiate son, leading to an incident.

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3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... François van Heerden
... Christian Roodt
Michelle Scott ... Elena van Heerden
Albert Maritz ... Willem Roodt
Sue Diepeveen ... Marika Roodt
Roeline Daneel ... Anika van Heerden
... Cliff Engel
... Brian
Leon Kruger ... Henri
Robin Smith ... Gideon
Jeroen Kranenburg ... Doctor
Tinarie van Wyk Loots ... Linda van Heerden
Jan Hendrik Opperman ... Stefan - Groom
Marion Holm ... Distant Aunt
Shaun Rossouw ... Best Man
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Storyline

Tells the story of Francois van Heerden, a mid-40s, white, Afrikaans-speaking family man living in Bloemfontein, who has become devoid of any care or concern for his own measure of happiness, so convinced of his ill-fated existence, that he is wholly unprepared when a chance encounter unravels his clean, controlled life. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Love. Envy. Obsession. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

5 October 2012 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Beauty  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

South Africa's official submission to the Best Foreign Language Film category of the 84th Academy Awards 2012. See more »

Soundtracks

Terminal
Written & Arranged by Ben Ludik
Performed by Albert Viljoen & Stellenbosch Session Brass Trio
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User Reviews

The ugly consequences of repressed sexuality, with half-baked subtitles
2 March 2013 | by See all my reviews

Beauty is a generally well-made movie about the ugly consequences of sexual repression in an intensely, violently homophobic society in South Africa (although it could just as well have been set in the United States or most other countries). The movie's few serious flaws--Deon Lotz is not believable as a gay man, even as a severely closeted and homophobic gay man; and Charlie Keegan is nowhere near the beauty the movie makes him out to be--in a way aren't really flaws at all, because those incongruities reinforce the fundamental impossibility of anything approaching health and sanity in such a perverted society. The true perverts are the homophobes, and this movie exposes them and portrays the hypocrisy, depravity and violence of their lives with great power and clarity.

The characters are bilingual; the movie's dialog is about 30% English and 70% Afrikaans, often switching back and forth several times within a single multi-person conversation. That would be okay if either both languages were subtitled (the best solution) or if the English were not spoken with a pronounced South African accent--but instead they chose to subtitle ONLY the words spoken in Afrikaans.

Often I found myself wondering why the subtitles suddenly stopped in the middle of a conversation only to realize too late that they were speaking English now so I was supposed to know what they were saying; then they would switch without warning back to Afrikaans and the subtitles resumed.

That's a big mistake, it would have been easy to avoid, and it's unacceptably and unnecessarily distracting. When the same voice alternates between Afrikaans and Afrikaans-accented English, a non-bilingual listener can't make the instantaneous adjustments required to understand every word. It would have cost them practically nothing to subtitle the English too, but they didn't. It became slightly less a problem later in the movie just because I got used to it, but it never ceased to be a distraction. That's the main reason I deducted a few stars.


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