The other day I watched one of South Afrika’s funniest romantic comedies of modern times, Rapulana Seiphemo and Kenneth Nkosi’s White Wedding. This is a beautiful film if you have seen one. It draws its strength from the excellent script, brilliant directing, exceptional cinematography and impeccable acting. The main and supporting actors did their best as well and deserve a 9/10 for their brilliance. Actually this film lives on its supporting actors than the main characters.
White Wedding is a simple story of Elvis who has to go to Cape Town, Gugulethu really, to marry his wow sweetheart Ayanda whom he met and dated in Johannesburg. She’s already in Gugs with her mother and sister and a whole neighbourhood (a wedding planner to boot) anticipating a wedding of the century.
Elvis has to go to Cape Town via Durban where his player friend Tumi lives and has an expensive German model that will once and for all raise the bar for Elvis and make him a worthy sbhali (son-in-law). However trouble starts brewing from the moment he has to leave Johannesburg by bus. He misses his bus.
Trouble follows a troubled man as his next trouble is in Durban where the customary German sedan that was supposed to score him points ends up being vandalized by Tumi’s scornful girlfriend who catches him in a ménage trios plus one. Tumi is far from apologetic.
The Mercedes Benz ML class that they borrow takes them through difficult terrain. They pick an English hitchhiker along the way who travels with them for the whole distance even when they have to scoop Ayanda’s aunt. The English lass ends up causing them all the trouble when she insisted that a ram given to them by Ayanda’s aunt travel with them in the passenger seat. The ML class ends up on the side of the road – broken down.
This takes them into the heart of Afrikanerland or a Vaderland where all the racial stereotypes which play themselves out in bars and other drinking holes are explored in an entertaining way, that ends up mocking the controversial De La Rey song and shows how similar people are as long as they don’t focus on the differences which unfortunately are highlighted.
Throughout the film you get to see Ayanda’s ex-boyfriend Tony trying hard to get his woman back before she marries Elvis who is at times caught up in a part of town called Indwe. Tony goes the extra mile to score with Ayanda. There’s no cellphone network in the bundu they travers, and there are communication hiccups to last him a lifetime.
Overall this is a beautiful film which’s storyline I should not give to you in eternity. I have already done so, this is up to you to go and experience the genius that is Rapulana and Kenneth. Also a taste of those old songs that used to make us all dance non-stop.
It’s also a story of friendship, a story about being single, a story of truth and a contrast of characters between rich and pompous Tony and simple Elvis. It’s the story of the Afrikaner and the English and their Anglo-Boer War that never really ended. And a Gugs community that is just happy to groove to anything.
I give this comedy, which I can compare to Brad Pitt and Julia Roberts’ The Mexican or Sex and the City a maximum 10/10. There’s never been any other local film which is this funny without romanticizing stereotypes or portraying darkies as a backward species.
Go and watch it, the last time I checked it was still on circuit. Or wait for the DVD, it will be worth keeping.