This is the last film in this blog series, and it’s from Swaziland, apparently. But mostly South Africa? Durban’s in South Africa, isn’t it?
Anyway, it’s a documentary about a musician called Syd Kitchen, and the premise is apparently that if only it hadn’t been for the anti-apartheid boycott, he’d like be world famous. And not just world famous in South Africa. (And perhaps Swaziland.)
And as usual in these kinds of documentaries, I wish they’d just started off the film with 30 minutes of the musician in question in concert. Because watching this, I have absolutely no idea whether he makes interesting music or not. Instead they use his music as background music to people talking, or very very short snippets in between people talking.
After about half the film, we get some longer snippets of his music, but seldom longer than a chorus or a verse. Very frustrating. So I still don’t know whether his music is any good or not. It seems kinda nice and melodic and not that interesting.
The film tries so hard to create a heroic “from obscurity” narrative, including a cathartic moment where Kitchen hits rock bottom and then bounces back, and it’s nice that it tries. But the film obviously shows someone who’s on his last legs, and the sojourn this film tries framing in a positive way is just sad and embarrasing.
(He died the year after the film was made.)
Fool in a Bubble. Josh Sternlicht. 2010. Swaziland.
Black Label Fusion Cocktail
- 2 basil leaves
- 2 slices ginger
- 1 sprig thyme
- salt & pepper
- A dash of sugar syrup
- A dash of bitters
- 100ml apple cider
- 300ml beer
Muddle ginger with the basil, thyme, salt, papper and the syrup. Add the cider and ice and stir. Pour the beer over the mixture and add a sprig of thyme to garnish.
“This beer cocktail will show you Carling Black Label as you’ve never seen it before!” Especially since I couldn’t find Carling Black Label here, so I did a naughty substitution. But this is a really good mix, although I think I would have preferred to have strained it, because drinking it is kinda fiddly. And the salt makes it kinda er salty after a while.