Media

How to write a film review (Part 2)

(Continued) In your review, you should also refer to the narrative, but DON’T give away any secrets that would spoil the fun for audiences (as some reviewers did for The Crying Game!), and DON’T “tell the whole story”, or even try. That is not your task as reviewer. Usually one would combine one’s discussion of…

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How to write a film review (Part 1)

There are good and bad film reviews. This could either pertain to “bad” as opposed to “good” writing (that is, an ungrammatical, sloppy, vocabulary-poor way of writing in contrast to a grammatical, fluent, clear, richly worded mode of expression), or to the structure of the reviews in question, or to both. Every person who wants…

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Richard Calland and the Maimane moment

Richard Calland’s latest article (“Maimane may engineer Zuma’s exit”) is a master class in fanciful political analysis. Even if published in the opinion section of the Mail & Guardian, its grasp on reality makes it more suited to fiction than a newspaper. His belief that the next leader of the DA would be able, or…

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Was Helen Zille done in by her race obsession?

Helen Zille’s shock resignation as leader of South Africa’s Democratic Alliance (DA) has triggered intense speculation as to who will replace her. Given the party’s federal congress is less than a month away, palace intrigue dominates all discussion. However, most suggest that Mmusi Maimane, the party’s parliamentary leader, is the hot favourite to win. Zille’s…

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Terrorism or mental illness? Why race matters

When co-pilot Andreas Lubitz crashed the Germanwings plane, killing 149 people, “mental illness” was deployed as an explanation. If he wore a turban and had a beard, and if I were a betting man, I would put my money on the media labelling him a terrorist. Where would you put your money? Be honest. Have…

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Trevor Noah – what his success reveals about good leadership

By Tanya Charles Unless you were on another planet, you will have by now heard that Trevor Noah is going to replace John Stewart as host of The Daily Show later this year. No doubt, this is ground-breaking for many, many reasons, but for me, a bit peculiarly, this announcement has got me thinking about…

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No country for Chicken Littles

“The erosion of institutions” has become something of a buzzword. Add to this the “paralysis in crucial institutions”, and “institutional fabric being unwound”, and you’d be forgiven for thinking you were in Mobutu’s Zaire. They’re usually adjectives attributed to the local commentariat: which interpret any event as a sign of the country’s imminent implosion/race war…

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Trevor Noah gets the perfect platform for his humour

March 30 2015. The day Trevor Noah was inducted into the league of American late-night talk show hosts. Diarise it. March 30 2015. Where were you on this day? What did you tweet when you heard the news? The news that he will be given the responsibility of presenting The Daily Show when Jon Stewart…

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Revisiting the Rhodes statue

The recent announcement by the University of Cape Town (UCT) that the statue of Cecil John Rhodes would be taken down has, largely, been welcomed. Although I am opposed to this decision, I am alarmed by the attitude displayed by both sides during this debacle. I have swung between extremes depending on how offensive or…

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Removing Rhodes’ statue would not ‘erase the past’

“Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it,” writes George Santayana. In the midst of the argument that the #RhodesMustFall campaign is fuelled by a misguided desire to “erase the past”, it seems to me that it is ironically, but precisely, this argument that is hampered by a deeply short-sighted approach…

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