The World Unseen (2007)
Average Rating: 4.5/10
Reviews Counted: 25
Fresh: 6 | Rotten: 19
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 4.4/10
Critic Reviews: 9
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 8
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 935
The owner of an apartheid-era Cape Town café experiences an attraction that threatens to change her life forever in director Shamim Sarif's look into a South Asian community in a divided South Africa. Amina (Sheetal Sheth) is the rebellious proprietor of the popular Location Café -- a destination spot for adventurous social outlaws who resent having their lives dictated by racist laws. From the black waitress who doesn't realize her place in South African society to the older white woman who
Nov 7, 2008 Wide
May 4, 2010
Regent Releasing/here! Films - Official Site
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Amber Rose Revah
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No amount of heaving bosom or quivering bottom lip can evoke a romantic frisson if the emotion simply isn't there.
It suffers from an abundance of transparent acting, simplistic plot twists and music that essentially screams, 'These are important scenes to behold!'
Drawing upon her own heritage as a descendant of South Africa's large Indian community, Sarif brings more than a dozen interconnected characters to life.
It doesn't leave you cold, but it doesn't exactly make an impression, either.
Less an account of hatred and injustice in apartheid-torn South Africa than it is a soap opera-ish romance that could easily be an episode of The L-Word.
If Sarif improves with experience, she might regret ever having allowed this effort to be seen by the public.
Both films are politically daring as well as what used to be called risque. Neither, I'm afraid, is well directed or acted.
You wait all year for a lesbian comedy drama with the production values of a 1980s TV movie and the acting standard of a carpet shampoo advert, and then two come along at once.
While the visuals never rise above TV-movie adequacy and some background acting hovers at am-dram level, The World Unseen's central story is strong enough to hold attention.
Intimacy, nuance and emotional punch are conspicuous only by their absence. Dreary.
This tale of forbidden love in the early days of apartheid South Africa suffers from heavy-handed direction and stodgy exposition, but it is made tolerable by its two central performances.
Sharif's second film maintains the small screen soap opera feel of I Can't Think Straight, but it remains a watchable lesbian romance, heightened by strong central performances from Ray and Sheth.
Possibly too restrained for its own good, the fictional story still makes a quiet impact.
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