Gangster's Paradise: Jerusalema

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Reviews Counted: 21

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Average Rating: 3.8/5

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Movie Info

Starting off with simple smash and grabs, and petty crime, Lucky Kunene quickly graduates to more aggressive heists such as armed robbery and carjacking. Soon, Lucky realizes he needs a bigger score to fulfill his goals of making it big, and escaping from the slums, to a dream house by the sea. Kunene hatches an elaborate and violent plan to make his fortune - hijacking buildings from landlords of Johannesburg tenements by winning the favor of the tenants and then holding their rent hostage from the landowners. His trouble with the law, coupled with an escalating war between a local drug lord, creates a tense standoff: both sides are closing in, and Kunene must stay one step ahead-or his empire, and his life, will come crashing down.

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Critic Reviews for Gangster's Paradise: Jerusalema

All Critics (21) | Top Critics (7)

  • Sadly things unwind and the movie loses power with covert special pleading for the wiseguy protagonist, who is supposed to be morally superior to obviously vindictive white cops or evil drug dealer rivals.

    Jul 8, 2010 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • rags-to-riches tale cut from the same cloth as City of God, Goodfellas and Scarface.

    Jul 7, 2010 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Writer-director Ralph Ziman strings it all together with slick competence, but given that leading man Rapulana Seiphemo does a persuasive line in moral ambiguity, it's disappointing that the proceedings too often default to glib shoot-'em-up.

    Jul 6, 2010 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • It's easy to overlook the formulas and just enjoy the ride.

    Jun 11, 2010 | Rating: 3.5/5 | Full Review…
  • The opening credits of Gangster's Paradise note that it was "inspired by real events." It would be more accurate to say that the film was inspired by Brian De Palma's Scarface and similar fare.

    Jun 11, 2010 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • Startlingly original, if occasionally overambitious. This is Tsotsi without the feel-good glow, a tale of entrepreneurship's perils and boundless pleasures.

    Jun 10, 2010 | Full Review…

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