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Film Review – Felix

Director: Roberta Durrant
Screenplay: Shirley Johnston
Cast: Linda Sokhulu, Okwethu Banisi, Hlayani Junior Mabasa, Joshua Wyngaaard, Joseph Hughes, Elvis Mahomba                        
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Rating: ****
Venue: Ster Kinekor Maerua Mall Cine 5\

Rating Score
* – Poor
** – Average
*** – Good
**** – Very Good
***** – Excellent

It is not everyday that one watches an inspirational, gentle and warm film. Most movie directors and writers are focused on action, sci-fi dramas and crime thrillers but few seem to focus on sweet, delightful and charming films. Roberta Durrant puts such directors to shame in her latest film ‘Felix’.  Felix tells the story of a young penny whistler Felix (Hlayani Junior Mabasa) who wants to play his father’s saxophone. However his strict mother is against it as she feels that playing Jazz is the ‘devil’s music’ and will lead him astray and to an early grave like his father. Felix’s mother Lindiwe (Linda Sokhulu) is a single mother working as a domestic worker in the surburbs of Cape Town. Felix who was named after his mother’s kind-hearted boss, Mr Felix is his mother’s pride and joy. She makes an even bigger fuss of the boy when he gets a scholarship to study at a posh all-boys private school. Things are not easy at the new school for young Felix and he struggles to fit in with the other school boys and is bullied. He then finds a friend and bodyguard in Ricardo (Joshua Wyngaard) and a tutor in Samuel Pepys played by Joseph Hughes. Together the three form an unbreakable bond that exhibits what true friendship is. Felix goes against his mother’s words after discovering his father’s old saxophone and begins rehearsing for the school’s jazz concert behind his mother’s back. To make matters worse, Felix’s saxophone lessons are with a man she blames for her husband’s death. Director Roberta Durrant is known for famous South African dramas Isidingo, Sokhuku and Partners, Montana, and for comedies S.I.E.S, and Stovel, just to mention a few. She is responsible for creating award winning dramas, series and films so it is no surprise that Felix has been nominated for the Audience Award Best Film Durban International Film Festival 2013 and has also received international recognition by being nominated for the Official Selection BFI London International Film Festival. There is not a doubt in the world that Linda Sokhulu is an exceptional actress but the award for the star of the film should go to the young Hlayani Junior Mabasa. This is the first film for the young actor but it’s not hard to see that his future in acting is definitely bright. There is also much promise in Wiseman (Elvis Mahomba) and Zanele (Okwethu Banisi) who play his brother and sister. This is one movie that you will want to watch over and over. I went to the cinema feeling a little depressed and left with a smile and a warm fuzzy feeling in my heart. It will make you smile, it will make you teary-eyed and will most definitely make you laugh. I think it’s safe to say that Felix can turn even the grumpiest grouch into a softy. You get real life drama that touches hearts because the storyline is something that we can all relate to. It is a real gem to watch, beautifully shot scenes, an awesome and charming cast, together making this movie worth every cent. Watching Felix will leave you feeling light hearted, it is an event you invite all your friends to go watch with you. So gather them and go watch Felix, I can guarantee that everyone will enjoy it and feel inspired afterwards.

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