Qiniso: A good example to make a bad film

BULAWAYO - The launch of Qiniso the movie at Rainbow Theatre at Bulawayo Centre on February 7 was a hyped event. It was described with all superlatives a writing artiste will love to use.

The who is who of the young artistes thronged the red carpet event to mix, mingle and smile and give each other hugs as they celebrated “their own”. The tried and tested artistes were also there to witness the event and acknowledge the ‘good work’ that young artistes were doing.

The Foyer to the cinemas at Rainbow theatres resembled launches at Hollywood. Those who attended were immaculately dressed. The cast, directors and producers of the film could be seen giving interviews. It was all beautiful. Attendance was amazing and left many envious. The makers of Qiniso have to be commended for their effective marketing strategy.

But all this glitz and glamour masked serious shortcomings there soon apparent to the excited gathering. For starters the event did not start on time; it started almost two hours later than the scheduled 6p.m. It was delayed as the equipment was not yet there at Rainbow Theatre.

When time to get in came the auditorium overflowed because of the large numbers attendance. The organisers had a situation on their hands and they needed to deal with it. Everyone rushed to grab a seat in the hot unventilated movie house. Those who did not get seats forced themselves on the footsteps. No one complained about stepping on someone’s feet. It was all endured in expectation of viewing a brilliant movie.

When everyone thought it was time to sit back and relax or squat firmly and enjoy the movie, organisers had a different plan. They started with drumming and poetry, a total miss on their side. The audience got restless and did not like the performance.  Not to say that drumming and poetry was a bad idea. Such a spectacle could have been done outside in the foyer as the guests were arriving, chatting and hugging waiting for Qiniso, The moment of truth.

The poets themselves performed as if they knew the platform was not theirs. They lacked confidence and belief. They stammered and apologised to the annoyance of the audience which immediately demanded the real event: Qiniso the movie. Lights were dimmed. On the screen could be seen various VLC documents from a laptop. The cursor could be seen seeking the appropriate document. To everyone’s agony it landed on JANE. Jane the Ghost’s terrifying story is known by most of Bulawayo’s socialites who clubbed and visited shebeens in the mid 90s. The short film the audience was forced to watch was nowhere near the Jane story that Bulawayo knows. The technique was an attempt to mix poetry with motion pictures and it was badly done. 

Then came the moment everyone was waiting for. This review is not based on the full movie because the writer left before the movie ended, ‘that is if it ended’.

To start with the story itself was fragmented. From the beginning one could not follow the characters’ issues and needs. The female character in a moving car ‘seemed’ to be the lead character because she appeared for a long period on the screen even though she apparently had no cogent story to tell.

The storyline was not clear in direction. It lacked a weaving thread. Scenes did not connect well at all. The story lacked main theme. It was as if it came from kids who had just discovered a camera that shoots motion pictures for the first time and decided to partake in Qiniso.

Camera work was the worst. Enerst Mackina is a good photographer but this time around l guess he worked without a director.

At times the camera moved at the speed of the car it was mounted on and in the process ‘missing’ wanted shots. In most cases the camera was shaking.

The technique of a ‘roving’ camera in movies cannot be ignored, it has to be learnt and mastered. Everyone who dreams of making a movie has to learn the trick of a roving camera.

The movie lacked basic techniques like selection of appropriate scenery. The director did not exhibit an iota of visualising location before calling for a trial shoot.

The most annoying thing was to see serious technical errors that could have been corrected by the editorial team. Camera shot directions were there in the movie written and unedited.

They came twice on screen ten minutes into the film and were not accompanied by pictures but a black background.

At one point the lead actress is heard telling the crew not to worry about the background noise as it will be taken care of by the editors. She was doubling as the director and actor at the same time.

Acting was pathetic. People who wish to act should first take acting workshops.

Gilmore Moyo is not an actor. His delivery of lines was not near convincing. He is not the only one. Most of the people who made up the cast are not actors.

One wonders whether the film had a casting director.

Movies are not shot anyhow and anywhere. Time has to be taken into account. A night scene has to be shot in the evening if no affects are to be used.

Weather situations have to be considered or editors will have to use soft-wares that create such effects. The brightness of the sun or its position has to be considered. All these were ignored by the young artistes. They just shot the movie ignoring important technical issues.

The only positive side of Qiniso is that the film was premiered. It attracted a large audience.  The sad truth though is that the movie is very poor. UQiniso ngamadlwane.

    Comments (1)

    Pathetic Journalism

    The Verdict - 27 February 2015

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