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Otelo Burning

HD   NR Closed Captioning

Sara Blecher

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About the Movie

Otelo Burning, shot in Durban, South Africa and directed by Sara Blecher, an award winning documentary director and producer. Somewhere between City of God and Blue Crush, the film tells the story of a group of township kids who discover the joy of surfing. It is set in 1989, against a backdrop of brewing conflict between two political groups in Lamontville. When 16-year-old Otelo Buthelezi takes to the water for the first time, it is clear that he was born to surf. Then tragedy strikes. On the day that Nelson Mandela is released from prison, Otelo is forced to choose between surfing success and justice. This beautifully made, insightful and entertaining film based on true events, captures a turbulent time in the history of South Africa.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 9
  • Fresh: 6
  • Rotten: 3
  • Average Rating: 5.8/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: Ms. Blecher draws fine performances out of the young actors and, to her credit, sugarcoats nothing. – Neil Genzlinger, New York Times, Nov 8, 2012

Rotten: This South African ditty is even framed as a scrapbook, mushily remembering childhood traumas and exaltations. – Michael Atkinson, Village Voice, Nov 27, 2012

Fresh: A heavy-handed but forceful coming-of-age story set circa 1989, against the backdrop of the violent beginning of apartheid's end ... – Joel Arnold, NPR, Nov 29, 2012

Fresh: This crisp, involving South African drama comes at you in waves, changing course and tone expertly. – Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News, Nov 29, 2012

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

Otelo Burning

Otelo Burning is a collectors item, you'll want to watch it over and over! Powerful entertaining story about the freedom, choices & overcoming obstacles. The beauty & surfing is breathtaking with talented young actors.

Otelo Burning
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  • $9.99
  • Genre: Drama
  • Released: 2012

Customer Ratings

We have not received enough ratings to display an average for this movie.

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