The Valley of Darkness

Saloon

Director: Dayakar Padayachee

Cast: Mbale Mavimbela, Kwenzo Ngcobo, Yateen Dayaram, Caitlin Goulding, Preston Kyd

Please note this is a Short Film

Nominated for the Best Short Film at the Kosice International Monthly Film Festival and a nominee for the South African Indie Film Festival, Durban based film director of Shadow, Dayakar Padayachee has compressed a Western style bar sequence into an impressive 11 minute short film with a distinctly South African flavour.

The two main characters Nkanyamba played by Kwenzo Ngcobo and the Bar Lady wonderfully played by Mbale Mavimbela exchange a short and tense dialogue written in Zulu, in which Nkanyamba, a washed up hitman who yearns for redemption seeks a safe place to quench his thirst in a saloon where he meets the tenaciously deceptive Bar Lady who questions his previous life with an aim of uncovering his weaknesses.

As the Bar Lady and Nkanyamba ‘s conversation intensifies, the dialogue is looked on by three shady observers Set played by Preston Kyd, Lilith played by Caitlin Goulding and Rudra played by  Yateen Dayaram who also starred in Dayakar Padayachee’s groundbreaking feature film Shadow which won Best Original Song at the 2017 Durban Gay and Lesbian Film Festival.

These observers sip strong drinks in dark shadows as they clutch their hidden weapons waiting for the moment when The Bar Lady confronts Nkamyamba and a Saloon style gunfight ensues. Just as the climax of the short film is reached, director Dayakar Padayachee cuts the action and leaves the ensuing bloodshed up to the audience’s imagination. Saloon is an impressive and atmospheric short film produced within a South African context which is severely lacking in good quality short films.

This is an innovative and original short film and the best part is that viewers can watch it on various mobile devices.

Highly recommended viewing and I do hope Saloon gets some more local and international recognition.

Saloon gets a Short Film Rating of 8 out of 10.

Concise and to the point. Catch this South African original short film now online.

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