Do you really need a bunch of reasons to go watch a proudly South African film or am I just a little to crazy about local content? Do not get me wrong I am quite discerning to what I subject my eyes to but when it comes to the South African film Industry I throw all caution to the wind, Ignore any negative reviews buy a ticket then make a judgement afterwards. Support is a necessity, South African filmmakers are putting out quality stories and as time moves the more they are understanding their audience and Happiness has done more than achieve this. It is a story that anyone who has experienced love can relate to almost immediately. Look at the numbers, they do not lie.
The film moves around three friends in uber cool Johannesburg as they move through motions of love and the challenges that come with it. Khanyi Mbau plays Zaza, wife to a Rich man and the troubles of a lonely woman, you know how that story goes. Renate Stuurman her character Princess a serial dater meets an artist that leads to unfortunate circumstances and Mmabatho Montsho who portrays Superwoman lawyer Nandi seemingly is the balanced of the three. Everything seems well with her fiance till her Ex partner comes back into her life and troubles the waters.
This film is still going crazy, I am blown away. Since it’s national release on the 19th February 2016 it has since pulled in R5 million in box office receipts. How Incredible? Now I think my reasons are not necessary but these points are what stand out for me for the film.
1. It was adapted from a Novel.
This is the first book written by a black female author to be adapted into film. I love the history of this film, the success was almost obvious, the film would do good because of the readers of the novel. The way in which this film was adapted, the book itself must be a fine read and it is no wonder it has done well winning the 2011 Commonwealth Writer’s Prize for Best First Book and the M-Net Literary Award in the Film category.
2. Pan-Africanism vibe about it.
Love is felt when you get immersed in the film in the sense that all cast and the overall feeling was love, love for one another and unity, it’s hard to explain. Ghana and Zimbabwe are represented. Chris Attoh and Tongayi Chirisa, big names that came on board put the film on another level. I appreciate the filmmakers for going outside the borders which has made this film appealing to a wide and broader audience. It is about seeing the bigger picture. Similar to Jacob’s Cross that idea was applied. Hlomla Dandala stars in the film too. A bigger message is being relayed and it is just refreshing.
3. Aesthetically Pleasing.
I am using a niche term and by that I really mean Eye Candy. Yes the film may come across as a chic flick with a poster of three women and a pink colour but do not let that fool you. Both sexes will walk out pretty satisfied, the girls are gorgeous and the men well, I think I fell in love. The boys, oh my goodness. All I can say is; fantastic casting.
Ghanian Actor Chris Attoh
Zimbabwean Actor Tongayi Chirisa
4. The Directing.
Thabang Moleya took this project. It gave a sense of a Sex and the City theme, it probably was a big influence. It felt, classy, fresh and modern. I am quite analytical and I can say that you know you are watching a good film when you forget it is a film and that is not an easy task to achieve but Thabang was able to achieve it. He is an award winning Director after all.
Master Director Thabang Moleya
5. It is a great Cinema experience.
There are some films that when you watch at home, you wish you had watched at the cinema. For instance, Avatar is that kind of film. If you missed seeing it at the cinema, believe me nothing could ever replace that experience not even a 3-D television. When I watched Happiness, I thought of the time when I watched Think Like A Man Too. The laughing, gasping and comments being passed around at every scene is really quite unforgettable. There are some scenes in Happiness that will keep reminding me why it is amazing going to the cinema, I mixed popcorn and tumbles for the first time. We were six girls, we had a blast and the best part was dissecting the film and allocating which guy crush was ours.
I don’t know how much longer Happiness has at the cinema but do not miss this one, it really is an exceptionally well written tale that has been adapted well, Directed well and performed with great dedication. It was great seeing Khanyi Mbau acting. I forgot how good she can be. Renate Stuurman with her striking beauty was a pleasure to watch and Mmabatho Montsho probably played the most envied role. It is tasteful and filled with Happiness.
It is still going strong, go and see it!