SA’s 'Moffie' opens to rave reviews as it hits UK streaming service

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Kai Luke Brummer as Nicholas Van der Swart in Moffie. (Photo: Supplied)
Kai Luke Brummer as Nicholas Van der Swart in Moffie. (Photo: Supplied)

After its successful and much-praised digital release in South Africa, Moffie, has just been released for streaming on Curzon Home Cinema in the UK, where it has been met with an overwhelming positive critical response. 

The film was the most watched film on the Curzon Home Cinema platform in its opening weekend.

The South African film received 5-star reviews in The Times and The Irish Times, and major praise in The Guardian (4 stars), The Telegraph (4 stars), Empire Magazine (4 stars) and the Financial Times.  

Reviewers are calling the film "a breath-taking piece of cinema" and "horribly evocative."

The Guardian described director Oliver Hermanus as South Africa’s "most significant auteur in several generations" and renowned writer and critic, Peter Bradshaw, chose the film as this publication’s film of the week. 

SEE THE REACTION TO THE FILM HERE:

ALSO READ: Moffie, masculinity, the military, and me – A conversation with director Oliver Hermanus

The film also caused a buzz on social media when journalist Owen Jones described it as "one of the most stunning and harrowing films" that he has ever seen and actor Josh O’Connor (best known for his role as Prince Charles in The Crown) tweeted "This film is beautiful. I can’t tell you how much I love it".

In response to this, rapturous response Hermanus said: "Our UK release of Moffie has been nothing short of amazing. Our film has been widely and enthusiastically celebrated by the UK press and it makes me, and I'm sure, everyone else who worked on Moffie, incredibly proud.

"We are putting South African cinema and cinema makers firmly on the global stage. It has been truly overwhelming."

The film – which was nominated for three British Independent Film Awards – is being distributed in the UK by Curzon Artificial Eye.

Moffie was due to have its theatrical release in the UK on 24 April, but due to the outbreak of Covid-19 the film was released digitally on their Home Cinema service first and will have its theatrical release as soon as cinemas reopen.  

Since premiering at the Venice International Film Festival last September, the film has been lauded globally and has created a number of international opportunities for the South African cast and crew involved in the film. 

Both Hermanus and the film’s lead actor, Kai Luke Brümmer (Nicholas van der Swart) were snapped up for international representation, and Hermanus has been in talks with a number of US and UK producers about upcoming projects. 

WATCH THE TRAILER HERE:

ALSO READ: 'Moffie': The controversial title, the director, the cast, and the review

Moffie has been available for streaming in South Africa since 31 March and was made available for streaming in Namibia on 28 April due to public demand. The film is set for release in other global markets in the course of 2020.

Local distributor, Penzance Films, has been blown away by the incredible response from South African audiences.

With the outbreak of the coronavirus they had to quickly make a plan to release the film online and according to co-producer Theresa Ryan - van Graan, the success of the streaming service has surpassed all their expectations. "Both the local and international response has been incredible. Moffie has placed South African cinema centre stage".

Moffie is available for streaming in South Africa and Namibia and in the UK.  

Compiled by Herman Eloff

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