February brought us two equally brilliant but wildly different Showmax Originals in SA: psychological thriller DAM and hilarious comedy sequel Tali’s Baby Diary.
So what treats does March have in store? Some great new bingeable Hollywood series and movies including Misbehaviour, starring Keira Knightley and featuring a very South African storyline.
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Tali’s Baby Diary
Tali’s back! In the hilarious mockumentary Tali’s Baby Diary, an unexpected pregnancy forces Tali (Julia Anastasopoulos, aka SuzelleDIY) into a desperate pivot from Insta-influencer to wholesome momfluencer, as Darren (Anton Taylor) and Rael (Glen Biderman-Pam) navigate the choppy waters of the Cape Town property game.
But as the nine-month clock ticks down, Tali and the boys are forced to face the bigger questions about life, love and parenthood.
You’ve seen the first four brilliant episodes – now see how the story continues! Last 6 episodes on 12 March.
Allen v. Farrow
This documentary has been dominating social media chat since its recent debut.
The four-part series explores the nearly 30-year-old allegations of child abuse against director Woody Allen and explores the unconventional family’s life in detail. Watch from 15 March.
We Are Who We Are S1
We Are Who We Are follows a group of teens growing up on an American Army base outside of Venice, Italy, struggling to find their own identities as they move into young adulthood.
The cast includes Jack Dylan Grazer (It, Shazam!), Chloë Sevigny, Francesca Scorcese (yes, she’s Martin Scorcese’s daughter) and breakout star Jordan Kristine Seamón.
The eight-part HBO series has an 88% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The New York Times calls it “a finely detailed, living fresco of libido and intoxication.” First on Showmax on 1 March.
Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist S1
Jane Levy (Suburgatory) was nominated for the 2021 Best Actress Golden Globe as Zoey, a young woman who suddenly gains the ability to hear other people’s innermost thoughts… in song.
Co-stars include Pitch Perfect star Skylar Astin, Glee’s Alex Newell, Lauren Graham (Gilmore Girls), Peter Gallagher, and Oscar winner Mary Steenburgen. It won a choreography Emmy and has an 8.2/10 score on IMDb. Binge from 1 March.
Golden Globe winner America Ferrera and her team are back at work at supersized megastore Cloud 9.
The new season of the ever-popular workplace comedy opens with immigration officers coming for Mateo and the arrival of a robot (named Glen) that’s designed to replace some of the staff.
The fifth season has racked up a 100% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Binge from 1 March.
Murder mystery Hightown, set in the beautiful but bleak Cape Cod, follows Jackie Quiñones, a hard-partying addict whose journey to sobriety is overshadowed by a murder investigation.
The series is executive produced by multiple-Emmy winner Jerry Bruckheimer, who’s produced everything from the CSI franchise and The Amazing Race to the Pirates of the Caribbean movies – and another Showmax series, LA’s Finest, starring Gabrielle Union.
It stars Teen Choice nominees Monica Raymund (Chicago Fire and Chicago P.D.’s Gabriela Dawson, and Lie to Me’s Ria Torres) and has an 80% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
The series has already been renewed for a second season. Binge episodes 1-4 from 12 March and eps 5-8 from 9 April.
Party of Five S1
It’s a cruel world for TV shows right now, where a gem like the reboot of the Golden Globe-winning family series Party of Five can get cancelled despite a 96% critics’ rating.
Still, we have one lovely season for the whole family to enjoy.
The teen drama follows the five Acosta children – Emilio, Lucia, Beto, Valentina and baby Rafael – in the US as they navigate daily life and struggle to survive as a family after their parents are deported to Mexico.
It has all the heart of the original with a social conscience for today’s world. Binge from 1 March.
Action, crime and horror come together in this grindhouse movie that sees a group of war veterans put their lives on the line to defend a young woman taking shelter in their local VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) bar when a deranged drug dealer and his relentless army of drug-addled punks come for their stash.
It has an 81% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes. 4 March.
Angel Has Fallen
#1 Box office hit action thriller Angel Has Fallen – the third instalment in the Fallen film series – stars Gerard Butler as Secret Service agent Mike Banning, who’s framed for a drone attack on the President of the United States (Morgan Freeman).
This action-packed crowd pleaser has a 93% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes and was nominated for a 2020 World Stunt Award.
Observer calls it “a doom-invoking, cathartic and strangely satisfying head-trip.” 4 March.
21 Bridges stars the late and legendary Black Panther, Chadwick Boseman (who also produced), as Andre Davis, an NYPD detective who shuts down the island of Manhattan to find two suspected cop killers.
The cast includes J.K. Simmons (Counterpart) and Sienna Miller, and is produced by Captain America and Avengers: Endgame directors Joe and Anthony Russo.
The film has a 91% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, with the Observer (UK) saying, “There’s a pulpy, comic-book noir to this highly enjoyable thriller.” 11 March.
Big Time Adolescence
Writer-director Jason Orley was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance 2019 for this coming-of-age film that has an 85% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Straight-laced teen Mo comes of age under the destructive guidance of his 23-year-old best friend, an aimless, drug-dealing college dropout played by Pete Davidson (SNL). IndieWire calls it “a portrait of youth in revolt”. 13 March.
BAFTA-nominated South African director Gavin Hood (Tsotsi, X-Men Origins: Wolverine) helms this dramatic docudrama based on a true story. It holds an 82% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Keira Knightley stars as whistleblower Katharine Gun, who exposed illegal spying operations by the US and British intelligence services ahead of the Iraq War.
Ralph Fiennes co-stars, alongside Matt Smith (The Crown); Matthew Goode; Indira Varma (Game of Thrones); and BAFTA nominee Rhys Ifans (Notting Hill). 18 March.
Keira Knightley leads this 2020 British comedy-drama is based on the true story of the women who disrupted the 1970 Miss World pageant.
Misbehaviour is a feelgood flick with 85% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
It stars Gugu Mbatha-Raw alongside Loreece Harrison and The Crown’s Emma Corrin (who has a South African mom) as South African contestants Pearl Jansen and Jillian Jessup respectively. First on Showmax on 18 March.
Jessie Buckley (Misbehaviour) shines as Rose-Lynn, a fresh-out-of-jail mother of two from Glasgow who dreams of becoming a Nashville country music star.
The role earned Buckley a nomination for a 2020 BAFTA for Best Leading Actress, and a win at the 2019 Scotland BAFTAs, where the movie won Best Feature.
It’s earned its lead widespread critical acclaim. The Telegraph calls the film, “Irresistible,” saying, “In Jessie Buckley, a true star is born”. 29 March.
More great movies
Alongside these recent additions, Showmax is also bringing you Oscar winners like 12 Years a Slave, Cate Blanchett’s Carol and Room with Brie Larsen and classics like Al Pacino’s Scarface.
Look out for biographies including Jackie and Diana and festival favourites The Beguiled, with Nicole Kidman and Brooklyn with Saoirse Ronan.
Swirl is a brand-new coming of age comedy movie in English, Afrikaans and Afrikaaps.
With her inner GPS firmly set on kroes-control, hairdresser Elaine Williams has to navigate tricky and treacherous terrain in the rocky, wild landscape of hair on the Cape Flats.
Produced by Nagvlug Films (who are currently filming the upcoming Showmax Original series Skemerdans), Swirl is directed by SAFTA-winner Quanita Adams (Arendsvlei) and stars Chanelle Davids, Vinette Ebrahim and Shaleen Surtie-Richards. 21 March.
Brad Binder: Reflections 2.0
He’s only 25 but Brad Binder is well on his way to becoming a MotoGP legend.
In 2016, he was the first South African in 35 years to win a motorcycle Grand Prix, and winning the 2020 Czech Republic motorcycle Grand Prix made him the first South African to win a MotoGP championship race.
No one was surprised when Brad took home Rookie of the Year at the end of the season.
This doccie about his incredible story so far is coming first to Showmax Pro on 12 March, and to other Showmax packages on 26 March.
HBO’s The Day Sports Stood Still
In March 2020, as the coronavirus pandemic spread across the world, sports arena fell silent. Emmy-winning director Antoine Fuqua (What’s My Name: Muhammad Ali) chronicles the abrupt stoppage, and the complex return to competition in the summer and autumn.
The HBO documentary interviews key figures, including NBA Players’ Association president, Chris Paul to an NFL Super Bowl champion who volunteers in an ER, to a defending WNBA champ who decides to sit out the season in protest at racial injustice.
The Day Sports Stood Still is coming first to Showmax shortly after its debut in the US. Date TBC.
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That’s a whole 12 weeks of entertainment to take your 2021 to the next level.
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