REVIEW: BLACK BUTTERFLIES
In 1960s Cape Town, as apartheid steals the expressive rights of blacks and whites alike, young Ingrid Jonker (Carice van Houten, Black Book, Valkyrie) finds her freedom writing poetry while frittering through a series of stormy affairs. Amid escalating quarrels with her lovers and her rigid father, a parliament censorship minister (Rutger Hauer, Sin City, Batman Begins), Jonker witnesses an unconscionable event that will alter the course of both her artistic and personal
BLACK BUTTERFLIES, a narrative feature based on the life of “South Africa’s Sylvia Plath,” releases July 17 on standard digital platforms and DVD. The film premiered at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival, where van Houten received the Best Actress in a Narrative Feature Award. At the 2011 Netherlands Film Festival, BLACK BUTTERFLIES received the Best Film Award, van Houten received the Best Actress Award and Sander Vos received the Best Editing Award. The film received rave reviews and was a New York Times Critics’
Jonker gained worldwide recognition in 1994 after Nelson Mandela read her poem, “The Child Who Was Shot Dead by Soldiers in Nyanga” during his opening address to the first South African democratic parliament. While living in Cape Town, Jonker became involved with Jack Cope and led a free-spirited life, despite her inner turmoil. Many of her poems and writings reflected on the destruction created by apartheid, including the poem made famous by
After learning more about Jonker and watching Mandela’s address, Dutch producer Arry Voorsmit was inspired to create a feature film about the troubled poet. Much of the research for the film revolved around documentaries, books, and Jonker’s poems as well as Cope’s journals, which were donated after his death, to the National English Literary Museum in Grahamstown, South
“The core of the story became this idea that as a human being you have to have a reason to live. There is a need for everybody to express themselves and apartheid is just the background in front of which our story unfolds,” Voorsmit said.
5.1 and 2.0 Dolby Digital Surround Sound
Interview with van der Oest and van Houten, presented by American Express.
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