‘Tsotsi’ a film with too much gore

Presley Chweneyagae (pictured) plays Tsotsi, a gang member who gets more than he bargains for after stealing a car.

Sarah Madl

At one time or another, we have all experienced one of those weird, “What’s the point?” kind of movies. Well, count the movie “Tsotsi” among those films. Honestly, this movie is nothing to write home about with its scenes of gore and violence. Call me crazy, but I think there is enough violence in our world. You might as well watch the news or read the paper because you will get the same level of violence you will find in this movie.

To be fair, let me share a little about “Tsotsi.” In Zulu, the language spoken in the movie, “Tsotsi” translates to “thug.” Tsotsi is the nickname of a young, street criminal from Johannesburg, South Africa, where the story takes place. In the first half hour of the movie, Tsotsi and his gang of fellow criminals very quietly stab a man on a public bus and steal his money. While in a club with his friends, Tsotsi beats up one of his friends who had a sudden attack of conscience about the heinous crimes they were committing. In the process of getting away from his misdeed, he shoots and paralyzes a woman then steals her car. The surprise he gets from stealing the car is quite a twist within the already insane plot. I don’t want to spoil anything else for those who will see this piece of work.

This movie is not for the weak in stomach and there is no question about that. I noticed many of the women in the auditorium gasped in horror at the sights of people being stabbed and held at gunpoint. Quite a few women left the auditorium a little while into the movie with horrified expressions on their faces. Don’t even go near this movie if you can’t stomach other films such as “The Godfather” Trilogy, “Schindler’s List,” or “The Silence of the Lambs.” You won’t be happy.

“Tsotsi” is an Oscar-winning film based on the 2005 novel by Athol Fugard, a progressive South African playwright and novelist. Fugard’s plays, many of which represent life during the system of imposed segregation (apartheid) in South Africa, have garnered him six Tony nominations.

Other works by Fugard:

“Sizwe Bansi is Dead” 1976

“The Road to Mecca” 1985