ANALYSIS: South Africa: Scramble for Resources – the Mining Time Bomb – by Sylvia Vollenhoven (All – July 15, 2015)

The riches that lie buried beneath the soil, the bounty of the oceans and our countless other resources are a blessing and a curse. Throughout history there have been powers eager to grab as much as they can while giving back as little as possible. In recent times the tensions in the mining industry exploded into the Marikana tragedy. Next week at the Durban Film Festival a documentary that is making waves internationally brings it down to a standoff between two cousins and the titanium of the pristine Wild Coast.

Two cousins, one proposed mining project on tribal land and a battle of epic proportions. That’s the story of The Shore Break, a landmark film by Producers Ryley Grunenwald and Odette Geldenhuys.

In the Amadiba area, on South Africa’s stunning Wild Coast, the Pondo people have tended their traditional way of life for centuries. Nonhle, a young local eco-tour guide, is a staunch supporter of her people and the endangered environment on which their livelihood and culture depend.

Her cousin Madiba, a local entrepreneur and self-proclaimed moderniser, is fully supportive of a titanium mining proposal and the government’s controversial plan to build a highway across their tribal ground. Tired of his community living without good access to employment, hospitals and schools, Madiba uses every backhanded method imaginable, scurrilously courting private capital and questionable government officials.

While the South African President deposes the pro-environment Pondo Royal Family, Nonhle rallies inspiring support with little more than dogged determination.

Featuring arresting cinematography, beautiful sand animation and sensational original music, The Shore Break delivers both a visually and emotionally riveting fight to the finish.

A review in the prestigious industry magazine Variety, states: “The Shore Break offers an absorbing microcosm of the clash between tradition and ‘progress’ when there are resources to be plundered. It’s a story that is being enacted in every corner of the globe, and there’s something heartening about the fact that Nonhle’s fellow villagers aren’t so unsophisticated that they don’t grasp how little long-term benefit they’re likely to get in sacrificing their way of life for short-term cash.

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