6.8/10
2,157
16 user 16 critic

Red Dust (2004)

Trailer
2:23 | Trailer
Police officer Dirk Hendricks (Bartlett) files an amnesty application for Alex Mpondo (Ejiofor), a member of the South African Parliament who can't remember the torture he once endured as a captive political activist. South African-born attorney Sarah Barcant (Swank), meanwhile, returns to her homeland to represent Mpondo, as well as Steve Sizela, Mpondo's friend who was arrested along with him ... See full summary »

Director:

Tom Hooper

Writers:

Troy Kennedy-Martin (screenplay), Gillian Slovo (novel)
Reviews
4 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jamie Bartlett ... Dirk Hendricks
Hilary Swank ... Sarah Barcant
Ian Roberts Ian Roberts ... Piet Müller
Chiwetel Ejiofor ... Alex Mpondo
Hlomla Dandala Hlomla Dandala ... Oscar Dumasi
James Ngcobo James Ngcobo ... Ezekiel
Glen Gabela Glen Gabela ... Themba
Connie Mfuku Connie Mfuku ... Alex's Aunt
Sylvaine Strike ... Woman at House
Greg Latter Greg Latter ... Mannie Bester
Zaa Nkweta Zaa Nkweta ... Reporter
Marius Weyers ... Ben Hoffman
Sam Phillips Sam Phillips ... Elder (as Sam Philllips)
Elize Cawood Elize Cawood ... Anna Hoffman
Nomhle Nkonyeni ... Mrs. Sizela (as Nomhle Nkyonyeni)
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Storyline

The South African lawyer Sarah Barcant travels from New York back to her hometown to represent the member of the Parliament Alex Mpondo in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission since torturer police officer Dirk Hendricks has made an application for amnesty. The parents of Steve Sizela request Sarah to represent them also since their son that was arrested with Mpondo but has gone missing. Hendricks uses one break in the trial to threaten Mpondo, promising to destroy his political career telling that he was a traitor. But Mpondo, who is a man traumatized with the torture, anticipates and tells what has happened to Steve Sizela and him in the hands of Hendricks and his superior Piet Müller. Will the remains of Steve be found and the truth disclosed? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violent images and language | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film and Cats (2019) are, as of now, the only two films Tom Hooper has shot in the 2.39:1 widescreen aspect ratio. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Alex Mpondo: We have the right to say that it hurt.
See more »

Connections

References The Graduate (1967) See more »

User Reviews

 
Beautiful, absorbing and thought-provoking
18 August 2005 | by davek28See all my reviews

Not knowing a great deal about the Truth and Reconciliation commission, I can only look at this as a piece of entertainment. I started watching it too late in the evening (recorded from BBC2 earlier this year) but once I'd started I had to watch to the end.

The down-side is that it's effectively a courtroom drama - never my favourite genre - but it's stunningly photographed (largely in super-saturated ochres) and well acted. Like a good novel, I couldn't put it down. All the way through, I wished I was watching it in a cinema to do the music and photography justice. What happened to its release in theatres? I'm an admirer of Chiwetel Ejiofor since I saw him in Dirty Pretty Things, and Hilary Swank looks terrific in this - very female and sexy for a change (possibly out of place, but she adds to the visual attractiveness of the film).

This picture deserves a wider audience than it seems to be getting.


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Details

Country:

UK | South Africa

Language:

English | Xhosa | Afrikaans

Release Date:

6 May 2005 (South Africa) See more »

Also Known As:

Red Dust See more »

Filming Locations:

South Africa

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »

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