Oh Shucks – it’s his son

Leon Schus­ter’s new com­edy fea­tures Rob van Vu­uren as Schuks’s son, Wayne, who de­vises a huge gag to im­press his fa­ther

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - GOODMOVIES - WENDYL MARTIN

OH SHUCKS, it’s a fa­ther and son spin. The lat­est in­stal­ment of the Schuks fran­chise, Schuks! Your Coun­try Needs You, sees the in­tro­duc­tion of Cape Town co­me­dian and ac­tor Rob van Vu­uren to the mix, as Schuks’s son Wayne.

The movie rolls be­tween script and gag as Wayne tries to prove his worth to Schuks. It’s watch­ing a movie about mak­ing a can­did cam­era movie, com­bin­ing real-life gags with a thin story that doesn’t re­ally go any­where.

Al­fred “Shorty” Ntombela is sta­pled in as usual, side-kick­ing from Schuks’s side.

Another new face is Laré Birk, a vic­tim of a gag who blew her gas­ket so well, she was asked to join the now en­sem­ble cast.

In the film, ac­tress Birk pitches up for an au­di­tion at a lo­ca­tion with a boom gate and Leon Schus­ter and Van Vu­uren as se­cu­rity guards.

They has­sle her for in­for­ma­tion and iden­ti­fi­ca­tion, to the point of a very watch­able berserk re­ac­tion.

At press in­ter­views last week with the cast and di­rec­tor Gray Hofmeyr, Birk says she went to the au­di­tion upon her agent’s ad­vice and that was the first time she swore ex­plic­itly in pub­lic.

“I used to think about how I would re­act. Schuks has ways to push you…

“Who wouldn’t ac­cept a role? I grew up with th­ese films,” she says.

Van Vu­uren has some ex­pe­ri­ence in can­did cam­era work. He used to ap­pear in SABC2 can­did fillers Obliv­i­ous and was pranked in 2010’s Schuks Tsha­bal­ala’s Sur­vival Guide to South Africa.

“This takes me out of my com­fort zone. I am not a prankster. I hope Wayne has a fu­ture, let’s see what the pub­lic thinks about his ad­di­tion to the brand,” says Van Vu­uren.

The char­ac­ter of Wayne de­vises a mas­sive gag in the film to im­press Schuks.

They head out to a lit­tle Ka­roo town to dupe spec­ta­tors at a rugby game into be­liev­ing that Schuks is a ref bi­ased to the away side.

Schus­ter says, “My son and I find each other in this movie. My daugh­ter says this re­la­tion­ship gives the movie heart.”

Ntombela adds: “It feels like Leon and Gray are adopt­ing more chil­dren. It started with me and they are build­ing a fam­ily. We need to en­ter­tain peo­ple.”

One of the best things about this film is the dup­ing of well-known fig­ures. Ex-Bok coach Peter de Vil­liers, Afrikaans singing heart­throb Bobby van Jaarsveld and rap­per Jack Parow are all roy­ally hood­winked. In­clud­ing th­ese gags is an ex­pen­sive ac­tiv­ity but not as dif­fi­cult as one might think.

Schus­ter says De Vil­liers was keen and that his agent said he would fall for it “like a po­tato”.

“It was re­ally cruel, but very watch­able. Schus­ter dis­guises him­self as a Ja­panese man ask­ing De Vil­liers to coach the Ja­panese rugby team for a lot of money. The ex­change takes place over a cer­e­mony of ridicu­lous rit­u­als. Poor P Divvy falls deeper and deeper.

“As the joke sunk in, he showed his show­man­ship… I could catch more celebri­ties but they will ask a for­tune. I have no guar­an­tee,” says Schus­ter. He con­firmed they paid De Vil­liers to in­clude the gag in the movie.

“If he was still Spring­bok coach we prob­a­bly would have had to pay dou­ble the fee.

“It is not like the old days when there were no pro­fes­sional rugby play­ers. It is much more dif­fi­cult now.”

Another must-watch scene is Jack Parow walk­ing into a flea mar­ket to con­front a man sell­ing his sig­na­ture an­i­mal print long peak caps.

Schus­ter says the con­cept for the film came from a dream he had of Un­cle Sam.

“It’s a nice theme for now. I fought a com­edy war,” he says.

“We are all im­por­tant, the film has a pa­tri­otic mes­sage. We are all in this to­gether,” adds Hofmeyr.

● Schuks! Your Coun­try Needs You is out now. Twit­ter: @WendylMartin wendyl.martin@inl.co.za

Coun­try Needs You. Schuks! Your PIC­TURE: THOMAS HOLDER

THE FAM­ILY: Leon Schus­ter, sec­ond from right, with cast mem­bers Al­fred ‘Shorty’ Ntombela, Laré Birk and Rob van Vu­uren at the pre­miere of

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