What it's about:
Mooirivier is an ensemble romantic comedy with many individual, interlinked plots that unfold during the countdown to Easter in South Africa. It tells the tale of different couples who go on a voyage of discovery of what love truly is – not the fairy tale version – but the comical reality of what it really takes to make it conquer in the end.
What we thought:
Inspired by US films Valentine’s Day, Love Actually and New Year’s Eve, Mooirivier is the first of its kind for Afrikaans film. You’re probably thinking, 'oh no, not another soppy love story!' Well, fortunately it is not just another soppy love story... it's so much more than that. While its theme is love, it's about different kinds of love, finding it, losing it, making choices about it and forgiving people for it.
With many different storylines and some quirky characters thrown in for comedic relief, Mooirivier is refreshing in that it doesn’t take itself too seriously. The movie follows couples whose stories interlink in some way. From an ex-pastor turned estate agent trying to find love again to a famous South African pop star falling for a hotel cleaner mom of a 10-year-old girl, Mooirivier paints stories that everyone will be able to relate to.
Standout performances that will have you rolling on the floor laughing include that of comedienne Anne Hirsch and singer Bouwer Bosch. Anne plays a receptionist at a hotel who can’t stop making 'bokkie ogies' at South African pop star Dave Meyer (Heinz Winckler) after he flirts with her to get information. Her total stalker/madly in love vibe is done in true Anne Hirsch style and if you only watch the film to see her, then it's worth it!
Bouwer plays quirky flute player Arnold, who lives in a men’s hostel on the Potch University Campus. His arch enemy is rugby captain Spys, who stays in the same hostel, and the two of them play ridiculously funny pranks on each other during the Easter break. Bouwer is honest and makes Arnold truly believable in his oddness.
Other standout performance include Leandie du Randt as the heartbroken Janine who tries to get over her boyfriend who dumped her; Milan Murray as the confused Amelia Malan who is trying to deal with the fact that her husband cheated on her and Tim Theron as the lonely and guarded ex-pastor turned estate agent who is finding it difficult to move on.
With original Afrikaans music written specifically for the film, and shot in the student city of Potchefstroom, Mooirivier is truly a beautifully shot film telling very real and honest stories.
Whether you’re into romantic films or just a laugh, this film will be just what you need.