The World Unseen 2008

The World Unseen

Critics Consensus

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27%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 26

69%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 1,001

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Movie Info

In 1950s Cape Town, progressive and free Amina (Sheetal Sheth) co-owns a cafe with a black man named Jacob. One day, a beautiful housewife named Miriam (Lisa Ray) visits the cafe, and Amina is instantly smitten. Miriam runs a store outside of town with her husband, Omar (Parvin Dabas), and feels increasingly stifled in her conventional life. She cannot help but give in to her desire when Amina comes calling.

Cast & Crew

Grethe Fox
Madelaine Smith
Colin Moss
De Witt
Shamim Sarif
Screenwriter
Katherine Priestley
Executive Producer
Lisa Tchenguiz-Imerman
Executive Producer
Mike Downie
Cinematographer
Mito Skellern
Casting
Tanya van Tonder
Production Design
Ronelle Loots
Film Editor
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Critic Reviews for The World Unseen

All Critics (26) | Top Critics (13) | Fresh (7) | Rotten (19)

  • No amount of heaving bosom or quivering bottom lip can evoke a romantic frisson if the emotion simply isn't there.

    April 3, 2009 | Rating: 2/6 | Full Review…
  • 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.

    April 3, 2009 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • A curiously strait-laced, timid and self-conscious affair.

    April 3, 2009 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • 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.

    April 3, 2009 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • It suffers from an abundance of transparent acting, simplistic plot twists and music that essentially screams, 'These are important scenes to behold!'

    November 14, 2008 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • 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.

    November 7, 2008 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The World Unseen

  • Jun 02, 2009
    Beautiful settings and the story that highlights the Apartheid Regime aswell as being a story of love and standing up for what you believe in. The acting was somewhat ropey at the start but settled as the movie went along.. and I like the fact that there was a pleasantly simple and more realistic ending rather than 'happy ever after'. Not Bad.
    ♥ Chani L Super Reviewer
  • Sep 17, 2008
    Beautiful directorial debut with great (and stunning!) lead actresses. Unfortunately too concerned with conveying as much of the book as possible, the transition from the great novel to the screen wasn't entirely successful in terms of storytelling. The cinematography and cast is very good, and for a first film this is extremely well done. Overall a heartfelt narrative set in Apartheid South Africa, centered around a tender lesbian romance, but also filled with interesting glimpses into Apartheid realities. I just discovered that "I can't think straight" was actually shot before this, so ignore the part about the debut... Two very good films in a row, kudos to Shamim Sarif.
    Ina S Super Reviewer
  • Apr 22, 2008
    An interesting movie! Set in 1950's South Africa, Miriam and Amina meet, and are instantly intrigued by each other. Miriam is a housewife, and a mother of three children. She abides her husband's every wish, and conforms herself to the upholding of her home. Dealing with her husband's adulterous affair with her sister-in-law, she finds motivation in taking risks and learning to do things on her own. Amina is unmarried, and runs a store with her business partner, Jacob. Carefree and independent, Amina tends to tempt the boundaries of the law. Indifferent to the opinions of others in the Indian community, Amina wishes only to live life the way that she seeks to. The personalities that mark each individual enables, and draws, them together. Great cast- Sheetal Sheth, Lisa Ray, Parvin Dabas, Nandana Sen, Nathalie Becker, David Dennis, Grethe Fox, Colin Moss, and Roderick Priestley. Worthy!
    Leo L Super Reviewer

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