7.7/10
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32 user 11 critic

Yesterday (2004)

After falling ill, Yesterday learns that she is HIV positive. With her husband in denial and young daughter to tend to, Yesterday's one goal is to live long enough to see her child go to school.

Director:

Darrell Roodt (as Darrell James Roodt)

Writer:

Darrell Roodt (as Darrell James Roodt)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Leleti Khumalo ... Yesterday Khumalo
Lihle Mvelase Lihle Mvelase ... Beauty
Kenneth Khambula Kenneth Khambula ... John Khumalo
Harriet Lenabe Harriet Lenabe ... Teacher
Camilla Walker Camilla Walker ... Doctor
Nandi Nyembe Nandi Nyembe ... Sangoma in village
Jacob Makgoba Jacob Makgoba ... Man at clinic
Tinah Mnumzana Tinah Mnumzana ... Matron
Matthew Monika Matthew Monika ... Security guard
Mnomi Moabi Mnomi Moabi ... Short teacher
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Storyline

A woman's journey. In a Zulu village, Yesterday is a cheerful mother with an inquisitive five-year-old child, Beauty. Yesterday has a persistent cough, and after several attempts to see the doctor at a regional clinic, she gets a diagnosis. She goes immediately to Jo'burg, where her husband is a miner. Then she must deal with consequences. Her singular motivation is to see that Beauty enrolls in school the next fall. The film begins and ends with Yesterday walking on a road. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Powerless to change the past . . . She lived to change the future. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive strong violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

South Africa

Language:

Zulu

Release Date:

3 September 2004 (South Africa) See more »

Also Known As:

Eine Frau namens Yesterday See more »

Filming Locations:

Johannesburg, South Africa See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The "Lotto" that the woman discuss at the water pump is the South African version of the Lottery. See more »

Connections

Featured in The 20th IFP Independent Spirit Awards (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

YAKA YAKA
Composed by Mpahleni Latozi
Performed by Madosini
See more »

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User Reviews

A Hauntingly Beautiful Film From South Africa
29 November 2005 | by gradyharpSee all my reviews

YESTERDAY is a film that settles into your heart to remind us how treasureable life is. Few films made with such utter simplicity of focus have addressed a world crisis issue in the form of one couple than this and for that reason alone this film should be widely seen. But there are many other reasons to pay attention to this South African movie.

Yesterday (Leleti Khumalo) is an eloquently beautiful Zulu woman who discovers she has been infected with HIV from her coal miner husband (Kenneth Khambula). She confronts him with that fact and his response is embarrassed rage and physical abuse. Yesterday is concerned that her daughter live to attend school and have a chance at a better life. She is befriended by the school teacher (Harriet Lenabe) and by the doctor in whom she confides (Camilla Walker). Growing ill from AIDS, Yesterday's husband returns home and seeks Yesterday's succor and forgiveness on his deathbed. The power of Yesterday's spirit only grows stronger with every sad reality of her life: she is determined to stay alive until her daughter is safely in school and the future that transition promises.

Each of these actors provide astonishing performances, so delicately nuanced that they are able to pry open the heart. The majestically beautiful scenery of South Africa, with its mist-clothed mountains and far reaching stretches of horizons, plays an important role in this story: nature remains the guardian of mortals. Director and writer Darrell Roodt has a little masterpiece of a film here and one that deserves all of our attention. Highly Recommended. Grady Harp


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