Scandals and success – and TikTok


Scandals and success – and TikTok

A collection of documentaries about exceptional sporting events are all worth watching, says ALI VAN WYK, while LAUREEN ROSSOUW reviews a movie about a scandalous relationship and BOUWER BOSCH shares his five favourite characters on TikTok.

  • 17 May 2024
  • Lifestyle
  • 2 min to read
  • article 10 of 14


Ali van Wyk's recommendation:

Untold: Jake Paul the Problem Child
Documentary feature
Director: Andrew Renzi

Netflix's Untold stand-alone feature-length documentaries about exceptional sporting events are all worth watching. It's not about the heroic but the bizarre, the dark side, the unexpected.

Anyone who has had boys in the last decade will know who Jake and Logan Paul are. These two okies from Cleveland, Ohio became world famous by spreading home videos of pranks and all kinds of other mischief on Vine. Jake has 21 million subscribers on YouTube.

But even for my two little boys, who are not angels, Jake and Logan Paul were too frivolous and arrogant. They preferred other YouTubers.

Untold: Jake Paul the Problem Child looks at the adult Jake Paul's entry into professional boxing. After his “career" ground to a halt on several levels — his partnership with his brother suffered a shipwreck, he was fired as an actor from a Disney series and several controversial incidents raged around him — he isolated himself and began to train.

Against everyone's expectations, Paul has won nine of his 10 professional fights, six by knockout. The sole defeat was against a world-class boxer, Tommy Fury.

The documentary showcases the bizarre American internet culture. Underneath Paul's tattoos, weird hair, extravagant colours and hip-hop lurks a smart and tough entrepreneur who has made his scruffy image an international brand. He also turned the way boxers are managed on its head.

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Laureen Rossouw's recommendation:

May December
Apple TV
Romance/thriller (2023)
Director: Todd Haynes

Twenty years after their notorious tabloid romance gripped the nation, a married couple buckle under pressure when an actress, Elizabeth Berry (Natalie Portman), arrives to research her upcoming role in a movie based on their lives. The scandalous relationship started when Gracie (Julianne Moore) was 34 and Joe (Charles Melton) was just 13.

The film is nuanced, engaging almost in the style of a daytime soap opera and brilliantly acted by all three. Joe clings to his not-the-victim narrative, Gracie chooses self-delusion to justify her actions and Elizabeth crosses boundaries while taking on the persona of Gracie.

The movie tackles a lot of issues with the way true stories are dramatised: sexual abuse, infantilised adults, denial of marital bliss and manipulation.

PS: “May-December” is an age-old term for an amorous relationship between two people with a considerable age difference.


Bouwer Bosch shares his five favourite characters on TikTok:

#1 Dan Corder @dancorder

People who swim against the current are my type of people.

#2 Themba-Robin @thembarobin

He creates funny and informed comedy that cheers me up every day.

#3 Mandri Sutherland @vroudrie

She is creative with her characters and unpacks the average Afrikaner's habits in an interesting way.

#4 JFK Mulder @jfkmulder

He teaches people Zulu words and phrases every day —  I'm doing his course. An interesting person who can speak more than 10 languages.

#5 Hemelbesem @hemelbesem4eva

His lyrics and raps are spiritual. No one comes close to him for the way he sees and articulates the world, and his videos and lyrics always give me hope.

♦ VWB ♦

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