What’s new on Showmax in March 2021

Swirl

Showmax has got some hot new entertainment to serve up to avid streamers.

Local

Tali’s Baby Diary | Last 6 episodes on 12 March

Tali’s back! In the hilarious mockumentary Tali’s Baby Diary, an unexpected pregnancy forces Tali (Julia Anastasopoulos, aka SuzelleDIY) into a desperate pivot from Insta-influencer to wholesome momfluencer, as Darren (Anton Taylor) and Rael (Glen Biderman-Pam) navigate the choppy waters of the Cape Town property game. But as the nine-month clock ticks down, Tali and the boys are forced to face the bigger questions about life, love and parenthood.

All our favourites are back in the new season, with a famous faces joining, including cameos from Coconut Kelz and Danny K, as well as standup comics Schalk Bezuidenhout, Nic Rabinowitz and Kate Pinchuck alongside Siv Ngesi and legend Deon Lotz.

Swirl

| 21 March

Swirl is a brand-new coming of age comedy movie in English, Afrikaans and Afrikaaps.

With her inner GPS firmly set on kroes-control, hairdresser Elaine Williams has to navigate tricky and treacherous terrain in the rocky, wild landscape of hair on the Cape Flats. While this path holds the promise of being straight, her journey has many kinks, bends, waves and u-turns, until a new choice presents itself, and Elaine must decide whether she has what it takes to recalculate and forge a new path.

Produced by Nagvlug Films (who are currently filming the upcoming Showmax Original series Skemerdans), Swirl is directed by SAFTA-winner Quanita Adams (Arendsvlei) and stars Chanelle Davids, Vinette Ebrahim and Shaleen Surtie-Richards.

International series

We Are Who We Are S1 | First on Showmax | 1 March 2021

From Oscar nominee Luca Guadagnino (Call Me By Your Name), We Are Who We Are follows a group of teens growing up on an American Army base outside of Venice, Italy, struggling to find their own identities as they move into young-adulthood.

The cast includes Jack Dylan Grazer (It, Shazam!), Chloë Sevigny, Francesca Scorcese (yes, she’s Martin Scorcese’s daughter) and breakout star Jordan Kristine Seamón.

The eight-part HBO series has an 88% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The New York Times calls it “a finely detailed, living fresco of libido and intoxication.”

Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist S1 | Binge from 1 March

Jane Levy (Suburgatory) was nominated for the 2021 Best Actress Golden Globe as Zoey, a young woman who suddenly gains the ability to hear other people’s innermost thoughts… in song.

Co-stars include Pitch Perfect star Skylar Astin, Glee’s Alex Newell, Lauren Graham (Gilmore Girls), Peter Gallagher, and Oscar winner Mary Steenburgen.

This quirky musical comedy won a 2020 Emmy for its Outstanding Choreography and has an 8.2/10 score on IMDb. Globe and Mail says it’s “brimming with both joy and compassion, this strange contrivance, and highly recommended.”

Superstore S5 | Binge from 1 March

Golden Globe winner America Ferrera and her team are back at work at supersized megastore Cloud 9. The new season of the ever-popular workplace comedy opens with immigration officers coming for Mateo and the arrival of a robot (named Glen) that’s designed to replace some of the staff.

The fifth season has racked up a 100% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes. “In terms of laughs per minute and laughs per character, no show comes close to touching Superstore’s large cast,” says Decider. “This is the biggest, funniest cast since The Office, and they are at the height of their power.”

Hightown S1 | Binge eps 1-4 from 12 March, eps 5 – 8 from 9 April

Murder mystery Hightown, set in the beautiful but bleak Cape Cod, follows Jackie Quiñones, a hard-partying addict whose journey to sobriety is overshadowed by a murder investigation.

The series is executive produced by multiple-Emmy winner Jerry Bruckheimer, who’s produced everything from the CSI franchise and worldwide reality phenomenon The Amazing Race to the Pirates of the Caribbean movies and Armageddon.

It stars Teen Choice nominees Monica Raymund (Chicago Fire and Chicago P.D.’s Gabriela Dawson, and Lie to Me’s Ria Torres) and has an 80% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with numerous critics praising Monica’s stellar performance. The series has already been renewed for a second season.

LA’s Finest S2 | Binge from 1 March

LA’s Finest is back! Gabrielle Union reprises her Bad Boys 2 role as Marcus’s sister Syd in this spinoff series, which earned her the 2019 Teen Choice Award for Choice Actress: Action.

Syd’s now working for the Los Angeles Police Department, where she partners up with Nancy McKenna, a working mom, played by Jessica Alba in a Teen Choice-nominated performance. LA’s Finest is executive produced by multiple Emmy winner Jerry Bruckheimer (Hightown, CSI).

Party of Five S1 | Binge from 1 March

It’s a cruel world for TV shows right now, where a gem like Freeform’s reboot of the six-season, career-launching, Golden Globe-winning  family series Party of Five can get cancelled despite being #31 on Rotten Tomatoes’ Best TV Shows of 2020, with a 96% critics’ rating. Still, we have one lovely season for the whole family to enjoy.

The teen drama follows the five Acosta children – Emilio, Lucia, Beto, Valentina and baby Rafael – in the US as they navigate daily life and struggle to survive as a family after their parents are deported to Mexico.

Created by the original show’s producers, the reboot has all the heart of the 1994 series, with a social conscience for today’s world. As NPR says, “At a time when the immigration debate still involves kids kept in cages, there is no better moment for America to see a series like this.”


Movies


Angel Has Fallen | 4 March

#1 Box office hit action thriller Angel Has Fallen – the third instalment in the Fallen film series – stars Gerard Butler as Secret Service agent Mike Banning, who’s framed for a drone attack on the President of the United States (Morgan Freeman).

The cast includes Jada Pinkett Smith, Lance Reddick (Bosch) and Nick Nolte. This action-packed crowd pleaser has a 93% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes and was nominated for a 2020 World Stunt Award. Observer calls it “a doom-invoking, cathartic and strangely satisfying head-trip.”

21 Bridges | 11 March

21 Bridges stars the late and legendary Black Panther, Chadwick Boseman (who also produced), as Andre Davis, an NYPD detective who shuts down the island of Manhattan to find two suspected cop killers.

The cast includes J.K. Simmons (Counterpart) and Sienna Miller, and is produced by Captain America and Avengers: Endgame directors Joe and Anthony Russo. The film has a 91% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, with the Observer (UK) saying, “There’s a pulpy, comic-book noir to this highly enjoyable thriller.”

Big Time Adolescence | 13 March

Writer-director Jason Orley was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance 2019 for this coming-of-age film that has an 85% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

IndieWire calls it “a portrait of youth in revolt”, while Entertainment says it’s “an endearingly messy portrait of boyhood and manhood”.

Rising star Griffin Gluck (Locke & Key) is straight-laced teen Mo, who comes of age under the destructive guidance of his 23-year-old best friend, an aimless, drug-dealing college dropout played by Pete Davidson (Saturday Night Live).

Official Secrets | 18 March

BAFTA-nominated South African director Gavin Hood (Tsotsi, X-Men Origins: Wolverine) helms this dramatic docudrama based on a true story.

Keira Knightley stars as whistleblower Katharine Gun, who exposed illegal spying operations by the US and British intelligence services ahead of the Iraq War.

Ralph Fiennes co-stars, alongside Matt Smith (The Crown); Matthew Goode; Indira Varma (Game of Thrones); and BAFTA nominee Rhys Ifans (Notting Hill).

It holds an 82% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and earned widespread praise for both Knightley’s understated performance and Hood’s co-writing and direction, with Financial Times saying, “Hood knows how to crank the tension… a certain fury ticks under the story.”

Misbehaviour | First on Showmax | 18 March

Keira Knightley leads this 2020 British comedy-drama is based on the true story of the women who disrupted and subverted the 1970 Miss World pageant.

It stars Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Belle), Lesley Manville (The Crown’s next Princess Margaret) and Greg Kinnear (Little Miss Sunshine). Loreece Harrison and The Crown’s Princess Diana, Emma Corrin (who spent her gap year volunteering in Knysna, and whose mom is South African) play South African contestants Pearl Jansen and Jillian Jessup respectively.

Misbehaviour is a feelgood flick with 85% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes. As Guardian says, you’ll find “a very British sort of wackiness to this bizarre and farcical true story from the annals of pop culture, told here with charm and fun.”

Wild Rose | 29 March

Jessie Buckley (Misbehaviour) shines as Rose-Lynn, a fresh-out-of-jail mother of two from Glasgow who dreams of becoming a Nashville country music star.

The role earned Buckley a nomination for a 2020 BAFTA for Best Leading Actress, and a win at the 2019 Scotland BAFTAs, where the movie won Best Feature.

It’s earned its lead widespread critical acclaim. The Telegraph calls the film, “Irresistible,” saying, “In Jessie Buckley, a true star is born”. Variety says Buckley’s performance is “Pure fire”, while Hollywood Reporter calls it “Terrific”, saying the film is “Wonderful… A break-out, toe-tapping hit.” Wild Rose has a 92% Certified Fresh critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Burden | 22 March

Oscar winner Forest Whitaker (Godfather of Harlem) is an idealistic reverend facing the Ku Klux Klan in the Sundance Audience Award-winning drama Burden. Based on a true story, it stars Garrett Hedlund (Mudbound) as KKK member Mike Burden, whose journey intersects with the reverend’s, bringing hope for redemption from hatred.

Burden has a 97% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, with IndieWire saying, “Garrett Hedlund’s best performance anchors [a] searing true-life KKK redemption drama”, calling it “a wrenching and real story that’s both universal and eerily timely.”

Survive the Night | 25 March

Bruce Willis and Teen Choice winner Chad Michael Murray (Riverdale), star in the 2020 action thriller Survive the Night, which sees a disgraced doctor and his family held hostage at their remote home by criminals on the run, when a robbery-gone-awry requires them to seek immediate medical attention.

More movies

1 March:

Triple-Oscar-winning historical drama 12 Years A Slave, directed by Oscar nominee Steve McQueen, stars Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Giamatti, Lupita Nyong’o, Sarah Paulson, and Brad Pitt.

Also catch one of the greatest gangster movies of all time, the 1983 classic Scarface, starring Oscar winner Al Pacino.

March also brings new additions from KIX, including acclaimed director Wong Jing’s 1993 classics The Evil Cult (aka Kung Fu Cult Master) starring Jet Li, and City Hunter starring Jackie Chan. Also look out for 200 M.P.H., Overheard 2 and 2020’s Unleashed.

4 March:

The Oscar-winning drama Room, about a woman held captive for years in a room with her young son, stars Oscar winner Brie Larson (Captain Marvel), Teen Choice nominee and Saturn Award winner (for this role) Jacob Tremblay (Wonder, Good Boys), and Sean Bridgers (Get Shorty, Deadwood).

Jackie, the Triple-Oscar-nominated Jackie Kennedy biopic, stars Natalie Portman, Peter Sarsgaard, Greta Gerwig, John Hurt and Richard E Grant.

8 March:

Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst and Elle Fanning star in festival-favourite drama The Beguiled, directed by Oscar winner Sofia Coppola (Lost in Translation), who won Best Director at Cannes for the film.

Coming on the same day is Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s 2013 directing debut, the multiple award-nominated comedy-drama Don Jon, starring Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore, Brie Larson, and Tony Danza.

15 March:

Two Oscar-nominated romance dramas set in the 1950s debut on Showmax on 15 March.

Brooklyn, starring four-time Oscar nominee Saoirse Ronan (Little Women, Lady Bird) and Saturn Award nominee Domhnall Gleeson (Run) was nominated for three Oscars.

Oscar winner Cate Blanchett (Elizabeth, The Lord of the Rings) and Oscar nominee Rooney Mara (Lion, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) star in the six-time Oscar-nominated drama Carol, which sees an aspiring photographer develop an intimate relationship with an older woman in 1950s New York.

22 March:

Directed by Clint Eastwood, biographical drama American Sniper stars eight-time Oscar nominee Bradley Cooper (A Star is Born, Silver Linings Playbook) as Navy S.E.A.L. sniper and Iraq War veteran Chris Kyle, with Golden Globe nominee Sienna Miller (The Loudest Voice, Layer Cake) as his wife Taya. The film won an Oscar for Sound Editing, with a further five nominations, including Best Picture and Best Actor.

29 March:

You can also catch Tom Cruise and Domnhall Gleeson in the Box Office #1 hit movie American Made, the story of US pilot Barry Seal, who became a drug-runner for the CIA in the 80s.

 


Non-Fiction

Kobe: Life of a Legend | First on Showmax Pro only 26 March; other Showmax packages 9 April

Kobe Bryant was one of the greatest basketball players of all time, and even though he is gone, his contribution will be remembered forever. This documentary looks at his beginnings, his impact on the game and his legacy.

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