Movies

The art of viral marketing: how to sell a movie

SHAUN SPROULE

Sometimes movies are only as successful as their marketing teams. A lot of time and money is spent on creating hype for films, with marketing teams going to great lengths to make sure their movie is a box office success.

The most recent movie with an overboard marketing scheme was Deadpool. With Ryan Reynolds' quirky character, there was quite a bit for the marketing team to play with. From billboards featuring a skull and a poop emoji followed by an “L”, to romantic comedy posters ahead of its Valentine’s Day release, Deadpool was set to be a success from the start. The team also created a set of Deadpool emojis and a Tinder profile for the anti-hero.

Another movie to make use of Tinder was 2015’s Ex Machina. Users could find a woman called Ava on their Tinder feed who would interact with users, engaging in deep conversations about love and life. Eventually, Ava points users to her Instagram page where they could find more photos of her, only to find out that they had been speaking to a Tinderbot advertising a movie about deceptive artificial intelligence.

Read more: The art of viral marketing: how to sell a movie

Tuks Camerata and UPSO to feature in new film

KOJO ESSAH

Free State is the result of a cross-border, co-production effort among South African production company Bosbok Ses Films, Utkarsh Entertainment, and Indian-based entertainment company ParNam Entertainment. The film, written and directed by acclaimed South African director Sallas de Jager, tells the story of the forbidden love between an Indian man and a white Afrikaans woman in the Free State during apartheid in 1979. Piet de Jager, one of the film’s producers, spoke to Perdeby to shed some light on the film.

The film portrays the love of two people of different races in a period of South Africa’s history where it was against the law. When asked if this was a difficult topic to make a film about, De Jager said, “I don’t think so. In fact, it’s reality. This movie tells a human story.” Although the film is set during the apartheid period, English is mostly used throughout the movie, and subtitles are used whenever any other language is used. This was done because “in a multicultural society, we follow reality.”

Read more: Tuks Camerata and UPSO to feature in new film

Movie review: While You Weren’t Looking - Catherine Stewart

JARED BEUKES

The thesis of Catherine Stewart’s new film While You Weren’t Looking, which opened on 2 October, is made explicit by the lovelorn, gay lecturer Mack (Lionel Stewart) who tells his students, “If you can ‘queer’ gender, you can ‘queer’ anything.” He means that the broad-mindedness of the openly homosexual, bisexual, and sexually explorative characters in the film – as well as those who accept them – is precisely what is required for South African society to become the non-racist, non-sexist, progressive state to which it aspires to be.

As noble as the film’s position may be, it fails to match this vision with artistry. With its clumsy dialogue and artificial performances, the film doesn’t take a sympathetic look at the lives of queer South Africans as much as it retreads worn-out stereotypes – the gay art lovers, the gaudy feather boas – and tries (and fails) to kindle discussion on the problems they face. We have an inclusive constitution, as the characters assert, but in spite of this – or perhaps because of it – problems still arise.

These problems include those encountered by Joe (Fezile Mpela), a former freedom fighter who happens to be the long-lost love of Mack. Joe, now married to a woman, has managed to bury his homosexual desires, but is still secretly offended when his boss wishes that we may exclude “the moffies” from civilised society.

Read more: Movie review: While You Weren’t Looking - Catherine Stewart

Movie Review: The Hateful Eight Quentin Tarantino

JARED BEUKES

Quentin Tarantino’s previous film, Django Unchained, starred Jamie Foxx as the freed slave Django and the pre-Civil War Deep South as the chains. His new film, The Hateful Eight – announced in the opening credits as his eighth – takes place in the post-war West, but otherwise is a neat reprise of the previous film. There is a white bounty hunter, his black associate (a memorable performance by Samuel L. Jackson) and the same looseness of history coursing through a profusely wordy script. Characters wind their way through seemingly endless threads of dialogue, only to blow each other apart in a blood-drenched apocalypse. Like the unchaining of Django, it’s the kind of feature one either very much relishes or reviles.

Since the start of his career, Tarantino has invited us to watch his films not as visions of reality, but as illustrations of ideas that merge into a world view. In The Hateful Eight, he has gathered together all the elements of a classic murder mystery and, as usual, he strings them out and gleefully stirs them together in a slow-cooking stew. But, rather than deal it out as it comes to the boil, he blows it up and delights in the spray of blood and organs over his guests.

Read more: Movie Review: The Hateful Eight Quentin Tarantino

Reboot vs original film: is Hollywood starved for ideas?

KOJO ESSAH

It is no secret that popular movies get sequels as a way of extending that particular series. This is done to please fans, as well as to gain revenue. Reboots are the re-imagining of once-popular franchises for a current generation, and are also a profitable and popular category for films. Fans and screenwriters, however, are starting to notice that Hollywood is churning out reboots and sequels on a regular basis, but hardly any new ideas are surfacing.

Read more: Reboot vs original film: is Hollywood starved for ideas?

Flip Through Perdeby

Perdeby Poll

For how much longer will you be attending your classes this semester?

Perdeby on SoundCloud

Listen to the Perdeby Entertainment fortnightly podcast for all your local and international music, film, gaming, literature and general entertainment news and views.

Video Gallery