Topics: Economic Development / Poverty, Music / Art / Culture
Directed by Teddy Mattera
Tswana, Afrikaans, Zulu and English, with subtitles in English
South Africa, 2004, 98 minutes
Traditional beliefs say that the souls of the dead will not join their ancestors until the mourners cry at their graves. Max Bua, 19, from a South African farm community, has inherited his grandfather's talent for mourning. Despite this heaven-sent gift, Max has his sights set on becoming a doctor and must travel to Johannesburg to begin his studies. With money the villagers collected for his tuition fees, and a wedding gift, he sets off to the city. Arriving too late to register and secure his room at the university, Max must seek out his infamous Uncle Norman. Director Teddy Mattera has constructed a slapstick comedy about a young boy’s coming of age and his wild adventure with a most unlikely partner in crime.
About the Director
Teddy Mattera was born in South Africa in 1963, and studied at the London International Film School and the Maurits Binger Film Institute in Amsterdam. He interned on the Oscar-nominated Hoop Dreams (1993).
His early experience ranged from work on documentaries for television in South Africa and the UK, and on shorts, commercials and music videos. He scripted the short Waiting for Valdez (2001) and directed the short Norman Comes to Jozi (2002). Max and Mona is his first feature film.
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