9 December 2017 | RavenGlamDVDCollector
When little Sterretjie's Dad is up for embezzlement, the family is torn asunder. Dad has to go to jail. Skande! That means, Shame! This show is in Afrikaans (South African Dutch) and filmed during the days when South Africa was still a proper decent country with values (albeit with that major flaw that the whole world was up in arms about BUT LET'S NOT GET POLITICAL HERE). Nowadays, this kind of thing would not be the front-page news it was back then, for local press has, uhm, bigger fish to fry, governmental excesses and all that (no piffling little few-thousand amounts for them, buddy), but back in those days, what with this country having been "Die Land van die Uitverkorenes" (means God's Country or something like that), and was partly holy almost almost, this was the ultimate shame. Dad was a respected lawyer and we keep our hands clean and he had his hands on hard-working people's trust money. Other people's bread and butter. Skande! Skande!
Anyway, little Judy Verster (literally Far Star, which is where her nickname originated) had a long-haired boyfriend Mom didn't approve of. Mom didn't approve of ANYBODY not in her social class AFTER HAVING MARRIED "UP" - and now you'll understand, dear American/British friend, after all this shame heaped upon them, How To Continue? The high life is no more. Mom, of course, had a taste for living high on the hog. So much so that she drove poor old Dad to extremes. And now Dad pays the price, and Judy would not be able to finish her university education. Oh, and she had such a lot of zany friends. But an awful uncle: A crooked in-law starts running what's left of the household, and Young Love faces dire resistance. Ryno Hattingh made a dashing leading man, and Jan Schutte played conflicted convicted felon Dad in a moving portrayal, while Emgee Pretorius with his big stomach was this hateful smirky smug Mercedes-Benz-driving villainous opportunist burying his in-law's reputation joyously in the name of Christianity but with the love of Mammon.
Dear Yanks and Europeans, I am not a to- the- bone South African, not in mind, anyway. I became attracted to your ways from as soon as I could think for myself, and was always VERY VERY critical of South African INFERIOR product. (Hell. Nowadays, you should see South African television for a joyride through dumpy dumpsville, WHICH IS WHY I BUY DVD, but, okay, I'm getting ahead of myself...)
This show featured Joanie Combrinck in the main role as the young girl affected by the downfall of her darling Dad. Now, or rather, THEN, Joanie Combrinck was a beautiful beautiful classy elegant tall lanky SUPERSWEET but with-it girl with long kinda straight brown hair SUMMED UP lovely as the dawn. Hell, forget Charlize Theron. Joanie was an inspirational sight, a super-cool dream. Joanie was My Kind Of Girl.
In my opinion, the loveliest girl EVER in South African film.
Insert big sigh here (and sad tears too for Lost World).
Years later, 2010, I can't really remember, I am RavenGlamDVDCollector, and I've been collecting glamorous DVDs for years, but how about this distant memory?
It wasn't released on DVD. Of bloody course not. It rots there in the archives of the South African Broadcasting Corporation, an organization regularly in the local news for all kinds of items regarding SHALL WE JUST NICELY CALL IT mismanagement. Aw, shucks, there are more correct terms BUT it is, sub judicae, I suppose...
Point is, some years ago, I tried to rescue STERRETJIE from damnation. I found out you could pay to have copies made. Sort of a legal bribe. Very, very expensive, much, much Rand (our beleaguered currency). Much much bribe. Well, they have to hook it up to VCR's and they'd much rather laze in the sun and smoke happy cigarettes? Bucks by the score. Not that they were worth much...
I didn't argue.
Long story short. After messing it up, they eventually got it right. I mean, at least NOW it's all there, no duplicated disks like their first try. Image quality way way substandard but it helps that I watch in total dark room.
Shortly afterwards heard about a fire sweeping the archives back there. Much apparently lost. I never phoned to ask. I wonder... STERRETJIE... Am I the only person in the whole wide wide world...?