The Wooden Camera

Synopsis: A township near Cape Town. Two young teens, Madiba and Sipho, find a gun and a camera. Sipho takes the gun, and Madiba the camera, sealing their fate.
Genre: Family
Director(s): Ntshaveni Wa Luruli
  3 wins & 3 nominations.
92 min

My brother, Madiba, | was always a loner.

His job was to sell tripe | in the market

every day, after school.

When he was not | selling tripe,

he would lie | on his back in solitude

and stare at the clouds | for hours and hours.

Sometimes he would | just lie there

and watch the way the wind | blew a piece of paper.

One day as he was roaming around looking | for things to stare at

he saw this boat | on the riverbank.

There was a boy in it, | very sick and weak from hunger.

His name was Sipho, | and he had no parents.

Madiba gave him food to eat

and a blanket | that kept him warm.

Since that day,

Madiba and Sipho became | very, very close friends.


Is he dead?

Hey, man, he's saying | hello to God.

Gimme that.



Check it out.

Check this out, bro!

Take it.

Please, let me see.

No, I'm fine on my own. | Stop it.

You are so stingy.


- Holla. | - Benny, my man.

- How you doing, man? | - Fine, man.

- Hi, Louise. | - Hello, Benny.

- Madiba. | - How is it?

It's fine, man.

That looks cool.

Where'd you get it?

Secret, bro. | Stop it!

It's nice, man.

Is that for real?

As real as me | and you, bro.

Check it out.

Jeez, it's heavy, man.

I know. | Check this out!


One bullet? What are you | gonna do with one bullet, Sipho?

Show you what | I'll do with one bullet.

Sit down, Benny.

Sit down, man, and relax. | Sit down.

See this bullet?

See it?

I'm just gonna put it in here.

There's five holes | in here-- five.

Come on, then. | And go like this--

First bullet.


Sipho! | Stop it, man.

- Three! | - Are you mad?

Four. We're getting there, Benny!

Last one. | It's coming, coming!

See? Only thing | you need is a gun,

bullet or no bullet.

You're crazy.

Let's get out of here.

I can get used to this.

So, Madiba, | what do you think?

It looks great, bro.


- Can I try, then? | - Yeah, yeah. No problem.

This is gonna work.

- It's perfect, man. | - Okay. There you go.

Madiba, please | film me, please!


- Hello! | - Stop it, Louise.


Please, Madiba, | just shoot me!


- Is everything okay? | - Cool, man.

It's good. Good.

That's what I'm talking about.

That is great.

- Hello! | - I've got to find a job here.

It's good, good.

Hey, why aren't you at school?

It's school holidays, papa.

You forgot.

But school keeps | you away from mischief.

You're on TV, dad.

That's a toy, man.

Tell the camera | where you come from.

I come from Port Elizabeth, | in New Brighton.

Why did you | become an actor?

I became an actor...

because I loved it,

I wanted to be an actor,

I wanted to appear

as the Richard Burtons

and the Roger Moores | and you name them.

You name them.

I've arrived, yes, yes!

Whenever Mr. Shawn | came to the township,

everyone ran after him

and wanted to show him | their talent.

He taught music | and other things, as well.

But he made everyone | feel special.

Hey, filmmaker!

People liked him | very, very much.

- Right here. | - Hello.

Madiba, doesn't this | wooden camera look great?

Hey, man, I love it.

It's cool.

Hey, look at me. | Don't I look so fabulous?

Look at me, Benny.

Yeah, whatever.

At least I'm in the picture. | Not like you.

Listen, if it wasn't for me,

you wouldn't be here, | so I wouldn't talk.

Actually, talk to the hand,

the face is busy.

That's great.

Anyway, guys, | where's this place?

This is our township, man.


That's Tembiso's house.

Isn't that his grandmother?

No, it's his mother.

The township?

How can you film | the township?

What is there to film?

Madiba, man, film me!

I give you a story, man!

No, man, | I'm happy with what I've got.

Man, I promise you | a masterpiece!


Man, the battery's low. | And there's no tape left.

Erase that sh*t.

No, man. | I don't want to.

Madiba, man.

Okay, let's make a deal.


You film me now | and then we'll go to Cape Town.

I get you new tapes, | new batteries.

Ya, let's go | to Cape Town, please, guys?

Please, please?

Let the games begin!

This is my home!

Cape Independent for 2.80. | Cape Independent for 2.80.

Cape Independent for 2.80.

Get your Cape Independent | for 2.80!

Is that a little Chinese-- | Oh, okay.

Really? Fascinating!

Let me have a look.

You can wrap it.

- No chips on it whatsoever. | - I see, perfect.

- I'll take it. | - Will that be cash?

- There we go. | - Bye, bye.

Estelle, we don't | throw money away.

I wasn't throwing it away! | I was giving it to him.

- Just get into the car. | - I wasn't doing anything wrong.

Why do you | always have to argue?

- I'm not arguing with you. | - Get into the car.

Okay, Benny, slow down.

- Slow down. | - Okay.

- Yeah. | - Good, I like this, man.

- Okay, okay. | - Okay, I got it.

- It's too bumpy here. | - Where, here?

Okay, hold on, hold on.

Yeah. Careful.

Push, Benny! Push!

Whatever I do, don't stop.

Madiba didn't tell | anybody about Estelle.

I guess he thought

people would start | talking about them.

He didn 't tell me, | of all people.

I guess he thought | I had a big mouth.

But I love my brother

and I'll do anything for him.

Guys, guys-- | Come here.

Come here, come here.

Have you got a pin?


Benny, have you got a pin?

Benny, have you got a pin?

Yah, yah. Wait.

Boy, Benny Boy.

Always quick | with the your hands.

I'm fine.

With a gun in your hand,

you and me can kick | this city around.

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Yves Buclet

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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