I’m not one to seek out trailers and reviews about a movie before watching it, so I had no idea what the movie Catching Feelings was about. I knew I wanted to watch the movie because a) I want to support the local movie industry, and b) I’m a sucker for romcoms and the title alluded to love and add Kagiso Lediga into the mix I expected to find myself laughing.
I added Catching Feelings to my Saturday “Netflix & Chill” playlist and I expected to lie back and be entertained by some light-hearted material but instead I found myself “catching feelings” and being immersed in the movie, and not just as a spectator, but seeing a relatable world unfold before me that evoked various emotions in me that subconsciously left me thinking that there is more engagement needed.
Kagiso Lediga did a brilliant job on the screenplay. From the various race relation dynamics, to urban suburbia living, to tackling marriage, finance in a marriage and infidelity, to the daily choices we make that shape our lives. Catching Feelings is a relatable human story with a South African narrative and would be appreciated by audiences globally and I can see why Netflix would add it to their catalogue.
During parts of the movie I found myself feeling proud and being blown away by the sheer brilliance of the scriptwriting that came across through what one would assume was a very simple narrative. The most profound part of the movie for me was towards the end when Andrew Buckland’s character, Heiner, got into an altercation with Kagiso Lediga’s character, Max, and told him with glee that “you my friend are alive and so am I”. That statement was such a loaded statement, and not to give away the context in which this was said, the profoundness in this comes from our ability to react to words, true or not. Whatever constructs we create from what we hear can make us catch feelings and react in a certain way. And to be alive is to have the ability to feel and to react.
I did not personally like the ending. I feel in the age of heightened divorced, we need to see more narratives of couples overcoming issues together and not apart.
Do watch Catching Feelings if you want to see where the South African movie industry is headed with a standard of excellence that is certainly going to be the benchmark. You also won’t be disappointed by the outstanding performances by Kagiso Lediga, Pearl Thusi and Andrew Buckland. Don’t watch Catching Feelings if you don’t have two hours to spare. The movie is rather long and needs some level of attentiveness to truly appreciate it.
I give it a well-deserved 4 out of 5.