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A Dry White Season (1989)

Ben du Toit is a schoolteacher who always has considered himself a man of caring and justice, at least on the individual level. When his gardener's son is brutally beaten up by the police ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(novel) (as André Brink), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 7 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Ben du Toit
...
Susan du Toit
...
Stanley Makhaya
...
Captain Stolz (as Jurgen Prochnow)
...
Melanie Bruwer
...
Winston Ntshona ...
Gordon Ngubene
Thoko Ntshinga ...
Emily Ngubene
Leonard Maguire ...
Bruwer
Gerard Thoolen ...
Colonel Viljoen
...
Suzette du Toit
Andrew Whaley ...
Chris
Rowen Elmes ...
Johan du Toit
Stella Dickin ...
Susan's Mother
David de Keyser ...
Susan's Father (as David De Keyser)
Edit

Storyline

Ben du Toit is a schoolteacher who always has considered himself a man of caring and justice, at least on the individual level. When his gardener's son is brutally beaten up by the police at a demonstration by black school children, he gradually begins to realize his own society is built on a pillar of injustice and exploitation. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 September 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Assassinato Sob Custódia  »

Box Office

Gross:

$3,766,879 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Quite a number of the black South African actors appearing in the film were fearful of reprisals from the South African government when they returned home after principal photography on the picture wrapped. See more »

Goofs

When the camera pulls away from the court house (Harare City Hall) a bus drives past displaying an advertisement for Balkan Bulgarian Airlines, which flew to Zimbabwe, but not to South Africa under apartheid during the 1970s. See more »

Quotes

Ian McKenzie: Justice and law, Mr. Du Toit, are often just... well they're, I suppose they can be described as distant cousins. And here in South Africa, well, they're simply not on speaking terms at all.
See more »

Connections

Featured in In Darkest Hollywood: Cinema and Apartheid (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

UMUSA
Written by Joseph Shabalala
Performed by Ladysmith Black Mambazo
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Records
Produced by Danny Lawson for Night After Night Ltd.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Accurate but incomplete portrayal of the old South Africa
29 March 2005 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

If you want to understand what the old South Africa could be like at its worst, this movie accurately portrays it. Well acted and only slightly over-dramatized, it gives you the sense of how the ruling culture was blind to its own injustices. Those who oppose the main character from within his own family make some valid points, and that makes it all the more chilling.

As someone who lived in South Africa until shortly before the year this movie is set in (and was forced to leave because I opposed apartheid), I can't fault the authenticity of this movie but I want to caution viewers not to form all your opinions of white South Africans from this type of film. There is a good side to every culture, but it is harder to portray and doesn't always make great box office.

If this movie leaves you hating anyone, you are taking away the wrong message. If it leaves you realizing this could happen anywhere, and ordinary good people can easily find themselves on the wrong side in situations like this, that is the right message to take away.


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