Country: SOUTH AFRICA
Run Time: 106 minutes
Steve Coogan and Garion Dowds put on two great performances in this searing courtroom drama based on true events from a 1987 case in South Africa. Dowds plays Leon, a teenage prison guard who is thrust into a major role in the hanging of up to seven inmates a day in South Africa’s apartheid-corrupt prison. After a road rage incident, in which he guns down a van full of strangers, he finds himself on trial facing the death penalty. Anti-death penalty lawyer John Weber (Coogan) takes on his defense in an attempt to discredit a system that abuses power and corrupts the minds of the young and powerless like Leon. SHEPHERDS AND BUTCHERS doesn’t flinch from the reality of the situation. The film never tries to make Leon an innocent bystander. Instead the story paints him as someone who did horrible things, showing the effects those actions had on him. While set 30 years ago in a different country, one can’t help but see the ripples of this intense scene play out in many cases here at home today. This film dares to bring up the emotional stress brought on by capital punishment for everyone involved. (In English and Afrikaans with subtitles) —T.W.
SHEPHERDS AND BUTCHERS
Tower City Cinemas
Saturday, April 01, 2017 at 9:30 PM
Sunday, April 02, 2017 at 12:10 PM
Anant Singh, Brian Cox
Steve Coogan, Garion Dowds, Andrea Riseborough
Oliver Schmitz is a South African-born director and screenwriter who has lived and worked in Berlin for 30 years. His films have won many international awards including those at Cannes, Berlin, and Munich film festivals.
"Mapantsula" (1988), "Joburg Stories" (1997), "Hijack Stories" (2000), "Life, Above All" (2010), SHEPHERDS AND BUTCHERS (2016)