South Africa in the Movies | New Movies Review Trailer and More

South Africa in the Movies

With its beautiful backdrops, fascinating culture and tumultuous history, it’s no surprise that South Africa has been the setting for several successful movies. The combination of mountains and movie stars is undoubtedly a recipe for success as the popularity of these films has demonstrated.


The most recent film to be made about South Africa, Invictus merges the story of Nelson Mandela’s opening year in office with the progress of the national rugby team in their bid to win the 1995 World Cup. The film documents Mandela’s attempts to use the success of the sports team to unite a country that has suffered from a rift for many years. Directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon this was sure to be a box office hit for 2010. The World Cup final takes place in Cape Town, and during the build up the viewer is privy to some phenomenal shots of Table Mountain and the surrounding landscapes. Nominated for two Oscars and a Golden Globe, this film perfectly encapsulates South Africa’s history and tells the story of one its most famous leaders.

Blood Diamond


In Blood Diamond, you will see a slightly different side of South Africa and parts of this film are certainly not for the faint hearted. However, it relays an important message about the way in which many of the diamonds worn by westerners have been acquired. The movie is set in a number of locations, depicting small local villages, the city of Cape Town, and the forests and mountains surrounding the city. The lead role really gives Leonardo di Caprio the chance to test out a more rough and ready style of acting, though his South African accent can be questionable at times. Though this film is heart wrenching in some places and somewhat violent in others, it raises awareness about the blood diamonds that are being exported out of the country even now.

District 9

Mingling everyday life in South Africa with the arrival of extra terrestrials, this film focuses purely on fantasy. The film tells of the arrival of an enormous space ship over Cape Town, from which an entire race of aliens exit and set up home in slums on the outskirts of the city. In the course of the film, a government agent becomes exposed to the aliens’ biotechnology, and as he begins to slowly evolve into an extra terrestrial being himself, he begins to understand the plight of the aliens and fight their corner. Less of a depiction of South Africa’s history or contemporary life, this film focuses purely on the futuristic sci fi. However, as the camera pans out across the slums, the backdrop of Table Mountain never fails to impress. Nominated for 4 Oscars, District 9 is an interesting take on the South African lifestyle.

Boasting a wealth of interesting history, intriguing culture, and beautiful scenery, South Africa is not only an ideal topic for a film, but it is the perfect location for filming. Many box office bonanzas have been produced either on, or in, this fascinating location, and many more are yet to come.


  1. Nice review and glad to see people like you holding our country in such high esteem, but I’d like to point out a few errors if I may:
    Firstly, District 9 took place in Johannesburg, not Cape Town which is where Table mountain is situated. What you may be perceiving as the mountain in the movie are in fact the mine dumps that one would find the city of Johannesburg.
    Secondly in the case of Blood Diamond, Cape Town was the home of the commander of the mercenary group, and the movie itself does not take place in South Africa but rather in Sierra Leone.

  2. in BLOOD DIAMOND..leo’s character is from Rhodesia..known as Zimbabwe

  3. I would like to update the comments on District 9. It was not shot in Cape Town but Johannesburg. You do not see Cape Town’s table mountain at all. The entire movie was shot in Johannesburg. Im a local in Jozi. Please research your statements


  1. 6/21/2010 Update « MoviesPress - [...] South Africa in the Movies | New Movies, Trailers and Humor Movies [...]

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