6.9/10
2,062
16 user 15 critic

Red Dust (2004)

Trailer
2:22 | Trailer

On Disc

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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 & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jamie Bartlett 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 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 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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Details

Country:

UK | South Africa

Language:

English | Xhosa | Afrikaans

Release Date:

6 May 2005 (South Africa) See more »

Also Known As:

Tierra de sangre See more »

Filming Locations:

South Africa

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

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

References The Graduate (1967) See more »

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User Reviews

 
An amazing movie about personal redemption
4 June 2006 | by karenst-2See all my reviews

I was unsure of this movie before renting and did so on the assurance that Hilary Swank has always given excellent performances in her movies. She seems to rely on restraint to gain the emotional impact that she does. And she didn't prove me wrong in this movie.

However the movie also had fantastic performances from all other members of the cast both speaking and non-speaking. I have to single out Jamie Bartlett and Chiwetel Ejiofor - the two main protagonists - for their outstanding acting abilities and portrayal of true human feelings and failings. The whole movie ran almost like a documentary.

I must applaud Tom Hooper as the director and Avril Beukes as the editor for keeping a multiple layered story being revealed smoothly whilst keeping dialogue and action moving along in an understandable fashion. The opening sequence of the South African landscape was striking and I had to push the pause button to savour the photography.

Why can't a movie like this ever get nominated for an International award. It seems to me to hit the high-rating button on all counts. It was not just a film it was a true experience of life in a country coming out of apartheid. A life of poverty was all around but it celebrated the dignity of the human spirit.


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