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Movie Review: Seriously Single

Written by tha - bang from the blog Movies and Things with Thabang on 11 Aug 2020
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Burnt Onion is doing well for itself as a production company. They've got their hands in television with series ranging from reality shows to comedies and they hit the motherload by getting worldwide distribution for their movie Seriously Single via the Netflix platform.

But does the film elevate the current game of the rom-com genre in SA?

Let's dig in...

Production wise, Seriously Single can compete with Happiness is a Four-letter Word and the granddaddy of SA rom-com Tell Me Sweet Something, whereby the story is Jozi-based - "read" Maboneng district.

It gives you the clean, beautiful face of Jozi and Jozi night life. The life is Sex and the City-light and it does the imagery well.

It's the story where things don't go that well.

It's literally a mixed bag of results to a point whereby the main story of Fulu Mugovhani's Dineo is eclipsed by the support story of Tumi Morake's Noni, emotionally, narratively and structurally.

Dineo's story is the story that most ladies can identify with, especially in Jozi. We all have a friend who wants that monogamous relationship but keeps finding themselves crying "why e' when they're left alone once again. The idea is appealing but the execution comes off as superficial.

The story gives a very casual glance at the root of this strong need and it doesn't help that the foil to this realization - Bohang Moeko's Lunga - is written quite thinly.

His set-up makes him seem as if he's just a plot point of the set-up and the rest of the movie when he pops up. He comes across as an inconvenience rather than an active player in the story.

Tumi Morake's Noni is unfortunately set up and fleshed-out better than the main story, which is a pity.

We understand why Noni is not monogamous and the issue that she's grappling with throughout the story whereas with Dineo it feels like one is watching a series of unfortunate events (dates) that don't really tell a story.

Then we hit the plot point where she needs to realise her issue but we're not with her on that journey up to that point.  

Lunga, as a support character, is not even given an arc because he's that cheating boyfriend archetype so it's okay if he's just a cookie cutout of a character instead of being a fully-fledged character.

It's lovely to see the life of folks who are on the up, to get a taste of what young folks are faced with in the dating game in Jozi but I just wish the movie had gone beyond the superficial.

The performances from Fulu and Tumi are on point though. Tumi Morake steals all the scenes she's in and her hubby (Mpho Osie-Tutu) makes a good cameo at the level of Melissa McCarthy's husband as a hotel employee.

What it felt like: A very light episode of Sex in the City in Maboneng minus the actual nudity and raunchiness.

Verdict: A popcorn flick that does not elevate or add anything new to genre that could have done with some major script editing to elevate it.
Score: **

*Yikes! ** You are on Your own ***Ke Zama-zama ****Almost Perfect ***** Instant Classic

Channels in this post: Netflix, Netflix South Africa


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