Gangster's Paradise: Jerusalema (2010)

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Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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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.
Rating:
R (for violence, language, drug use and some sexual content)
Genre:
Action & Adventure , Art House & International , Drama , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 wide
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:

Cast

Rapulana Seiphemo
as Lucky Kunene
Jeffrey Sekele
as Nazareth
Ronnie Nyakale
as Zakes Mbolelo
Malusi Skenjana
as Tony Ngu
Shelly Meskin
as Leah Friedland
Jafta Mamabolo
as Young Kunene
Motlatsi Mahloko
as Young Zakes
Kenneth Nkosi
as Sithole
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Critic Reviews for Gangster's Paradise: Jerusalema

All Critics (20) | Top Critics (6)

rags-to-riches tale cut from the same cloth as City of God, Goodfellas and Scarface.

Full Review… | July 7, 2010
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

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.

Full Review… | July 6, 2010
Time Out
Top Critic

It's easy to overlook the formulas and just enjoy the ride.

Full Review… | June 11, 2010
New York Times
Top Critic

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.

Full Review… | June 10, 2010
New York Post
Top Critic

Startlingly original, if occasionally overambitious. This is Tsotsi without the feel-good glow, a tale of entrepreneurship's perils and boundless pleasures.

Full Review… | June 10, 2010
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic

Though South Africa's racial strife is frequently invoked, sociopolitical inquiry takes a backseat to creaky gangster-cinema tropes.

Full Review… | June 8, 2010
Village Voice
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Gangster's Paradise: Jerusalema

Excellent south african gangster story. Really gives a new dimension to the conflicts of the kids growing up in hard times over there. Nicely done.

Slappy McGee
Slappy McGee

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.

Lee Mayo
Lee Mayo
½

This film is about gangs in South Africa after apartie. It is a well made film and very informative. Some brief nudity and all the different emotions you could ask for. Base on actual persons. See it.

John Shields
John Shields

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