By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act January 4, 2013 at 3:54PM
Trailer for another thriller from South Africa; it seems like we've written about more than a couple in the last 12 to 18 months - definitely more than we've ever covered in previous years.
Obviously, South Africa-set thrillers existed before S&A was born, but we only recently started paying attention to them.
I'd say probably after District 9, in 2009 (also the same year this site was created) South African cinema, especially what we'd call more *genre* fare, has been receiving international attention unlike it ever did before; South African filmmakers (mainly white South African filmmakers however) are making their splashy feature film debuts in South Africa, which are attracting Hollywood's interest, leading to the filmmakers helming gazillion dollar Hollywood pictures with big name stars.
Gaving Hood (Tsotsi) and Neill Blomkamp (District 9) immediately come to mind, as well as Sharlto Copley (although he's an actor); and we can also throw this new fellow into that mix...
Writer/director Mukunda Michael Dewil, who latest project, titled Vehicle 19, based on a *hot* script he penned, attracted Fast Five star Paul Walker, who is starring and executive producing the espionage thriller set in South Africa.
Mukunda can thank the success of his feature debut, another thriller titled Retribution, which stars two of South Africa’s reverred actors Joe Mafela and Jeremy Crutchley.
Retribution apparently made a bit of a splash in the international film festival circuit (although we obviously missed it) and was released in South Africa in 2011, where it was said to have been very well received. I read a number of comparisons made to Cape Fear and Misery, to give you some idea of what to expect; others called it a "violent" and "atmospheric" "well-crafted" psychological thriller; and the fact that the film's 2 starring characters are a black and a white man, is said to be irrelevant to what happens in the narrative, with one critic calling it a "post-apartheid movie."
I suppose a comparable term here in the USA might be "post-racial," whatever that means to you...
But back to his latest, Vehicle 19; yes, there are black people. Starring alongside Paul Walker is New York-born South African-raised actress & singer Naima McLean, who features most prominently in the trailer, as far as black actors in the film are concerned.
Others in peripheral roles include Tshepo Maseko, Mangaliso Ngema, Welile Nzuza and a few more.
A foreign traveler (Walker) unknowingly picks up a rental car that will tie him to a web of corrupt local police.
Watch the trailer below, which I actually don't care much for. Maybe there's a better one out there. But if this trailer were all I had to go on, without knowing anything else about the film, I'd probably pass on it (It has no USA release date yet, if it ever happens):