Tsotsi | Chicago Reader

Tsotsi

Rated R 94 minutes

A murderous little punk from a Johannesburg slum pulls off a carjacking only to discover an infant in the backseat; instead of ditching the baby he impulsively makes off with it, and the experience of caring for someone so helpless reawakens his humanity. Adapted from a novel by Athol Fugard, this powerful South African drama turns on the debut performance of young Presley Chweneyagae as the hood, and it's magnificent: a stone-faced killer in the opening scenes, he becomes an open book as the story progresses, as frightened, confused, and needy as the baby he drags around town in a shopping bag. Gavin Hood directed this 2005 feature, which picked up an Oscar for best foreign film. In Zulu, Xhosa, and Afrikaans with subtitles.

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