Empire Magazine’s 100 Best Films Of World Cinema

The greatest films not in the English language…

1: Seven Samurai 1954, Japan Japan Flag

2: Amelie 2000, France France Flag

3: Battleship Potemkin 1925, Russia Russia Flag

4: Bicycle Thieves 1948, Italy Italy Flag

5: Pan’s Labyrinth 2006, Mexico Mexico Flag

6: Battle of Algiers 1966, France France Flag

7: City of God 2002, Brazil Brazil Flag

8: The Seventh Seal 1957, Sweden Sweden Flag

9: The Wages of Fear 1953, France France Flag

10: Spirited Away 2001, Japan Japan Flag

11: La Dolce Vita 1960, Italy Italy Flag

12: Metropolis 1927, Germany Germany Flag

13: La Regle du Jeu 1939, France France Flag (Rules of the Game)

14: Three Colours Trilogy 1993-4, Poland Poland Flag

15: Let The Right One In 2008, Sweden Sweden Flag

16: Tokyo Story 1953, Japan Japan Flag

17: The Apu Trilogy 1955/56/59, India India Flag

18: Oldboy 2003, Korea Korea Flag

19: Aguirre, Wrath of God 1972, Germany Germany Flag

20: Y Tu Mama Tambien 2001, Mexico Mexico Flag

21: Nosferatu 1922, Germany Germany Flag

22: Rashomon 1950, Japan Japan Flag

23: Spirit of the Beehive 1973, Spain Spain Flag

24: Come And See 1985, Russia Russia Flag

25: Das Boot 1980, Germany Germany Flag

26: La Belle et la Bete 1946, France France Flag

27: Cinema Paradiso 1988, Italy Italy Flag

28: Raise The Red Lantern 1991, China China Flag

29: Les Quatres Cent Coups 1959, France France Flag

30: Infernal Affairs 2002, Hong Kong Hong Kong Flag

31: Godzilla 1954, Japan Japan Flag

32: La Haine 1995, France France Flag

33: M 1931, Germany Germany Flag

34: Waltz With Bashir 2008, Israel

36: La Grande Illusion 1937, France France Flag

37: Dekalog 1988, Poland Poland Flag

38: Rome Open City 1945, Italy Italy Flag

39: Ashes And Diamonds 1958, Poland

40: Le Samourai 1967, France France Flag

41: L’Avventura 1960, Italy Italy Flag

42: My Neighbour Totoro 1988, Japan Japan Flag

43: In The Mood For Love 2000, Hong Kong Hong Kong Flag

44: Cyrano de Bergerac 1990, France France Flag

45: Ikiru 1952, Japan Japan Flag

46: Suspiria 1977, Italy Italy Flag

47: Jules et Jim 1962, France France Flag

48: 10 2002, Iran Iran Flag

49: Downfall 2004, Germany Germany Flag

50: M. Hulot’s Holiday 1953, France France Flag

51: Closely Observed Trains 1966, Czechoslovakia Czechoslovakia Flag

52: Akira 1988, Japan Japan Flag

53: Touki Bouki 1973, Senegal Senegal Flag

54: All About My Mother 1999, Spain Spain Flag

55: Festen 1998, Denmark Denmark Flag

56: Lagaan 2001, India India Flag

57: Belle de Jour 1967, France France Flag

58: Central Do Brasil 1998, Brazil Brazil Flag

59: Persepolis 2007, Iran Iran Flag

60: Heimat 1985, Germany Germany Flag

61: Jean de Florette / Manon des Sources 1986, France France Flag

62: Knife in the Water 1962, Poland Poland Flag

63: 8 1/2 1963, Italy Italy Flag

64: A Prophet 2009, France France Flag

65: Wings of Desire 1987, Germany Germany Flag

66: Un Chien Andalou 1929, Spain Spain Flag

67: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 2000, China China Flag

68: The Vanishing 1988, Holland Holland Flag

69: Solaris 1972, Russia Russia Flag

70: Hard Boiled 1992, Hong Kong Hong Kong Flag

71: Persona 1966, Sweden Sweden Flag

72: Ten Canoes 2006, Australia Australia Flag

73: Hidden 2005, Austria Austria Flag

74: Devdas 2002, India India Flag

75: A Bout de Souffle 1960, France France Flag

76:The Idiots 1998, Denmark Denmark Flag

77: House of Flying Daggers 2004, China China Flag

78: Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown 1988, Spain Spain Flag

79: Bande A Part 1964, France France Flag

80: Mother India 1957, India India Flag

81: The Host 2006, Korea Korea Flag

82: Battle Royale 2000, Japan Japan Flag

83: Xala 1974, Senegal Senegal Flag

84: Orphee 1950, France France Flag

85: Il Conformista 1970, Italy Italy Flag

86: Run Lola Run 1998, Germany Germany Flag

87: Andrei Rublev 1966, Russia Russia Flag

88: Leningrad Cowboys 1989, Finland Finland Flag

89: Loves of a Blonde 1965, Czechoslovakia Czechoslovakia Flag

90: Rififi 1955, France France Flag

91: Goodbye Lenin 2003, Germany Germany Flag

92: Ghost in the Shell 1995, Japan Japan Flag

93: The Fourth Man 1983, Holland Holland Flag

94: Yeelen 1987, Mali Mali Flag

95: Way of the Dragon 1972, Hong Kong Hong Kong Flag

96: Delicatessen 1991, France France Flag

97: Farewell My Concubine 1993, China China Flag

98: Ran 1985, Japan Japan Flag

99: Iron Monkey 1993, China China Flag

100: Night Watch 2004, Russia Russia Flag


Ignazio Silone – Fontamara

Fontamara is a 1930 novel by the Italian author Ignazio Silone written whilst he was a refugee from the Fascist Police in Davos, Switzerland. It is Silone’s first novel and is regarded as his most famous work. It has received public acclaim throughout the world and has sold more than a million and a half copies in twenty-seven languages.

Trattoria Stefano, Nelspruit

Finding something to eat in the smaller cities if you do not wish to have franchise factory food is becoming difficult. Located in a quiet shopping center in the suburb of Steiltes, I stumbled upon Trattoria Stefano.

Authentic Italian food at it’s best, the kind of place you want to return to to work through the whole menu.

“Owner Stefano was privileged to grow up in a very strong culture of Italian cuisine. He attributes his culinary skills to his beloved grandmother (Nonna) who was a ‘capocuocca’ (master chef). Mamma Estersita Revello, taught Stefano to make different pasta shapes, hundreds of sauces, pizzas and cook everything else from the tender age of 7

You don’t need to fly anywhere for a taste of Italy! The Trattoria Stefano restaurants in Nelspruit and White River not only offer good Italian food, but are kitted out in Italian style”.

Decor is opera-inspired, reflecting Stefano’s opera-background. The ambiance is great, attentive and friendly staff make you feel welcome and Elena, the padrona, is ever present, greeting regulars by name.

(½ chicken marinated in chillies, olive oil, fresh sage, lemon, balsamico, parsley, garlic, roasted & served on a tomato Arriabiata sauce) – perfection!

Trattoria Stefano – Nelspruit
Steiltes Shopping Center

078 165 9745
013 744 9310


Notes on drinking beer in South Africa

Drinking beer is a legal activity in South Africa as in most of the civilized world. Driving while under the influence is illegal, which is good.

The legal position:

Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) limits:

Concentration of alcohol in blood: 0,05 gram per 100 millilitres (all drivers), professional drivers: 0,02 gram per 100 millilitres.

Breath alcohol content: 0,24 milligrams per 1000 millilitres (all drivers), professional drivers: 0,10 milligrams per 1000 millilitres.

The minimum legal age for alcohol consumption is 18 years.

Having an  opinion on which beer you like and dislike, even if those you dislike are “manufactured” by huge corporations with lawyers as nasty as their beer, is guaranteed by the Constitution of South Africa: Section 16: Freedom of Speech and Expression. I will therefore freely express my opinions on this topic, for the benefit of those visitors who are unfamiliar with the beer-drinking scene in South Africa and who might be brought under wrong impressions  by misleading advertising in the media. I feel qualified to give advice as I have spent the best part of my adult life dedicated to the noble quest of finding good beer.

South Africa is a hot and arid country, so beer is not a luxury item. The average annual per capita consumption is almost 60 liters, with 45 million “capitas” standing in the queue. A lot of beer is required to keep the country going, creating a lucrative market and fierce competition. Sadly the best beers available in South Africa are brewed by our neighbour, Namibia.

The SAB-Miller group owns more than 91% of the South African market, the rest going mostly to the Heineken-Diageo-Nambrew partnership. This SABMiller monopoly resulted in three local brands, Castle (4 variants), Carling Black Label, Hansa (2 variants). They can afford to say “take it or leave it”. Compare that to Belgium with it’s 10.5 million inhabitants and an annual per capita consumption of 93 liters. They have 178 economically viable breweries with over 500 standard individual beers.

The beer I will discuss here as a kind of introductory beer survival guide for visitors, are all freely available and mass produced by commercial breweries. There are a small number of micro – or artisan brewers, which I would like to discuss separately. Descriptions as supplied by the respective breweries.

I would have liked to consider as beer only those which comply with the Reinheitsgebot or German Purity Law of 1516. In the original text, the only ingredients that could be used in the production of beer were water, barley and hops, but then my list would have been very short. Grudgingly I will therefore also list those which do not comply.

Please note: the sequence of the listings below is purely random, and is not meant to be a ranking of any sort.


Look out for these offerings from Namibia Breweries, all brewed according to the Reinheitsgebot.

Tafel Lager

Tafel Lager is carefully brewed in accordance with the German Purity Law of 1516 using only malted barley, hops and water. Tafel Lager is a fine quality smooth tasting natural lager beer with a wholesome flavour and aroma. The taste can be described as the ideal balance between refreshment, flavour and bitterness, which makes it the perfect companion for any occasion. Often not available in restaurants and pubs, but most liquor stores stock it.

4 percent Alcohol by Volume
– Golden colour

Windhoek Lager

A premium, natural beer brewed according to the German Purity Law of 1516, using only the finest imported ingredients certified to contain no genetically modified organisms. This beer is mild in bitterness with a distinctive hops flavor, delivering an exquisite taste profile.

– 4 percent Alcohol by Volume
– Mild bitterness; rich golden colour


Windhoek Draught

A premium quality, natural beer brewed using only the finest imported ingredients. It delivers a refreshing taste profile for the social drinking occasion. Windhoek Draught is the most sessionable* beer in the Windhoek range, and can also be found in the unique big 450ml nonreturnable pack – ideal for any outdoors occasion.

– 4 percent Alcohol by Volume
– Mild bitterness; rich golden colour

* session beer n.

Any beer that contains no higher than 5 percent ABV, featuring a balance between malt and hop characters (ingredients) and, typically, a clean finish – a combination of which creates a beer with high drinkability. The purpose of a session beer is to allow a beer drinker to have multiple beers, within a reasonable time period or session, without overwhelming the senses or reaching inappropriate levels of intoxication. (Yes, you can drink and enjoy beer without getting drunk.)


Windhoek Light

If you really have to drink low-alcohol beer: Windhoek Light is a refreshing crisp natural light lager carefully brewed the Reinheitsgebot way using natural ingredients only: malted barley, hops and water. Low in alcohol and kilojoules without compromising on taste, it contains no preservatives or artificial ingredients and is the ideal beer for the health conscious beer lover. Light golden in colour and offering sessionable control, Windhoek Light is a healthier choice in beer.

2.4 percent Alcohol by Volume
– Energy Content: app. 27 kcal/100ml; 115 kJ/100ml
– Sum of usable Carbohydrates: 3.05 g/100ml
– Protein Content: 0.38 g/100ml
– Fat: Nil (duh!)
– Fermentable Sugars: 1.09 g/100ml



A traditional dark beer known as “bock” beer. Urbock is brewed to perfection and distinguished by its rich dark Munich barley malt, giving it a rich malty flavour. Urbock is only brewed once per year and is therefore only available as of May of each year, in limited quantity. A traditional bock beer is ideal for drinking on cold winter nights. Quite scarce.

7 percent Alcohol by Volume
– Coppery red colour





Global brands of SABMiller, imported from country of origin:


Described as 100% pure, containing water, barley, hops and yeast. Imported from the Netherlands.

  • Distinctive, full bodied taste characterized by major hop malty notes
  • A moderately bitter and long after taste
  • A rich golden colour and a noble hop aroma



Pilsner Urquell

Imported from the Czech Republic.

  • Intensely hoppy, full-bodied flavour
  • Characteristically fine bitterness against a background of honey-sweetness




The following are now brewed in South Africa by Heineken-Diageo:


Amstel Lager

Amstel Lager has a mildly bitter taste and cheerful character with a wholesome, floral aroma accompanied by hints of hop. Amstel was first established in 1870 in Amsterdam (The Netherlands). In 1968, the Amstel brewery joined forces with Heineken International. Today, Amstel Lager is sold in over 60 countries worldwide.

5 percent Alcohol By Volume




This premium beer is brewed in Namibia with passion using only malted barley, hops and water. Heineken connects you to a more enjoyable and inspiring (beer) experience.

5 percent Alcohol by Volume
– Golden Colour



Laurentina Clara.

A SABMiller product brewed in Mozambique, mostly found in the northern provinces – Mpumalamga, Gauteng and Limpopo. Laurentina is Mozambique’s oldest beer brand, first brewed in 1932, and has become Mozambique’s most awarded beer.





Castle Milk Stout

One of the few SABMiller products I drink. Quite pleasant. Castle Milk Stout is brewed as a lager, not as an ale like most stouts, so it takes longer to brew. The “Milk” refers to the lactose sugars which are added during the brewing process.

Castle Milk Stout has a thick texture, strong flavour and full satisfying taste. The taste is complex and has a hint of caramel. Dark roasted malt provides its distinctive dark colouring, and the creamy smooth head comes from a special yeast. 6% ABV.





The following lot I will only drink not to offend a well-meaning host, quoting someone else…..it’s fine to have an educated palate, but it doesn’t have to come at the expense of politeness…..   All SABMiller products.

The following ingredients are listed on the labels: Barley, MAIZE, hops and water, but take note: they do not state ONLY, as Nambrew does.  What else goes in there, no one knows. I have heard that seaweed extract is added to enhance the beer head (foam).  Cobalt sulfate is also added to stabilize the foam. Does it sound far-fetched? Read this: Beer-cobalt cardiomyopathy was observed in people who heavily consumed beer, according to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, based in Atlanta, Georgia, a federal public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (www.atsdr.cdc.gov). Check out the Center for Science in the Public Interest report, published in 1982, that Miller Lite contained propylene glycol alginate (a seaweed extract), water, barley malt, corn syrup, chemically modified hops extracts, yeast, amyloglucosidase, carbon dioxide, papain enzyme, liquid sugar, potassium metabisulfite, and Emka malt (a food coloring). One can only assume this is not an isolated case, but rather common practice in the mass production beer industry.

What does SABMiller themselves say of the contents of their products? Here is a cut and paste from their official website:

We have a wide range of international and local beers. So, what’s in our beer?

We are currently in the process of updating our database. We’re sorry for any inconvenience caused. The updated database will be available here soon.

??????,  go figure.

I will not waste your time on detail for the following:

Carling Black LabelHansa Marzen GoldHansa Lager


SABMiller International brands brewed in South Africa:

Peroni Nastra Azzurro      

made with barley malt, corn grits, hop pellets and hop extract. Origin: Italy

Miller’s Genuine Draught        

Origin: USA. Contents: Barley malt, selected cereal grain, hops and water.


…and the downright UGLY



Lager  Draught Lite



What can I say? Avoid, avoid, avoid!

What’s Eating Gilbert Grape

What’s Eating Gilbert Grape is a 1993 film directed by Lasse Hallström and starring Johnny Depp, Juliette Lewis and Leonardo DiCaprio. Peter Hedges wrote the screenplay adapted from his 1991 novel of the same name. Great acting by DiCaprio and Depp.

Alain de Botton – The Art of Travel

The perfect antidote to those guides that tell us what to do when we get there, The Art of Travel tries to explain why we really went in the first place – and helpfully suggests how we might be happier on our journeys.

The BangBang Club

The film tells the remarkable and sometimes harrowing story of four young men and the extremes they went to in order to capture their pictures in the crucial days prior to the downfall of Apartheid in South Africa.

Olive & Oil, Glenwood – Durban

“Located in the heart of a bustling road with a reputation as an up and coming culinary hotspot in Durban, Olive & Oil Glenwood is undoubtedly a leader in quality dining set to the casual backdrop of a Mediterranean-style ambience”.

Tel: 031 201 6146

Address: Corner Helen Joseph/Bulwer Road, Glenwood.

A Durban franchise which has three other branches, I really enjoyed the experience, or experiences rather. Visited them twice in the week I worked in Durban.


I don’t pretend to be a gourmet, but I believe you do not have to be a chef to know when food tastes good (or bad).

One of my pet peeves is paying good money for a meal at a restaurant and then realising that I could have had better food at home.

I would like to tell you about pleasant food-experiences I have had.

Umhlanga Lighthouse – Umhlanga Rocks

The lighthouse on Umhlangas beach was completed in 1954 and has been the subject of numerous paintings and memorabilia. Built to replace the Bluff lighthouse, which was commissioned in 1869 but had to be abandoned due to its rapid deterioration, it stands guard to some of the most treacherous waters of Southern Africa and not only warns ships of the hidden dangers, but the flashing light is also a welcome to the ships sailing into the safety of the Durban harbour.
The circular concrete tower, painted white with a red band at the top, stands 21m above the beach and has a focal plane height of 25m. The fixed red light enables ships waiting to anchor in the outer anchorage, to monitor its position. If the red light can be seen, it suggests the ships anchors have probably dragged and is too close to shore.
This popular seaside resort was originally part of the sugar estate of Sir Marshall Campbell, who introduced the colourful rickshaws to Durbans beachfront. When a track was made from Mount Edgercombe to Umhlanga Rocks, the area became popular with the local farmers who leased small plots on the shoreline of the ocean and built vacation cottages.
Umhlanga means Place of Reeds in the Zulu language, referring to the beds of reeds that accumulate on the banks of the Ohlanga River a few Kilometers North of present day Umhlanga Rocks. The Umhlanga Lighthouse has never had a keeper, as the Oyster Box Hotel, which was built in 1869 and was originally the first beach cottage in the area, has been the official warden. The lighthouse controls are in the hotel office where staff monitor the controls and report to Portnets Lighthouse Service.