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Die weiße Massai (2005)

A girl, Carola, whose vacation in Kenya takes an interesting turn when she becomes infatuated with a Masai. Carola decides to leave her boyfriend to stay with her lover. There, she has to ... See full summary »


Corinne Hofmann (novel), Johannes W. Betz (screenplay) | 4 more credits »

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Nina Hoss ... Carola Mamutelil geb. Lehmann
Jacky Ido ... Lemalian Mamutelil
Katja Flint Katja Flint ... Elisabeth
Antonio Prester Antonio Prester ... Pater Bernardo (as Nino Prester)
Janek Rieke ... Stefan
Helen Namaso Lenamarken Helen Namaso Lenamarken ... Lemalians Mama
Nicolas Sironka Nicolas Sironka ... Mini-Chief
Damaris Itenyo Agweyu Damaris Itenyo Agweyu ... Asma (as Damaris Agweyu)
Barbara M. Ahren Barbara M. Ahren ... Carolas Mutter (as Barbara Magdalena Ahren)
Robert Dölle ... Frank
Barbara Herschbach Barbara Herschbach ... Jenny
Morgan Lematampash Morgan Lematampash ... Tom
Kiriniyaga Lenamatiyo Kiriniyaga Lenamatiyo ... John
Christine Namkuny Christine Namkuny ... Saguna
John Erick John Erick ... Mike


A girl, Carola, whose vacation in Kenya takes an interesting turn when she becomes infatuated with a Masai. Carola decides to leave her boyfriend to stay with her lover. There, she has to adapt to the Masai's way of life and get used to their food which includes milk mixed with blood. She also has to face her husband's attitude towards women and what he expects from a wife. Nonetheless, Carola is welcomed warmly into the tribe she has chosen to join. Written by Ploy P.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Romance


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Official Sites:

Constantin Film [Germany]




German | Swahili | English

Release Date:

15 September 2005 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Den vita massajen See more »

Filming Locations:

Kenya See more »


Box Office


€7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$2,083,857 (Germany), 16 September 2005
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs



Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The cast and crew lived in tents among the Samburu during the entire shoot. They also studied their language and customs. See more »


Featured in Smagsdommerne: Episode #3.14 (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

Love Conquers All...Well, Almost
16 October 2010 | by bebop63-1See all my reviews

Having just finished reading The White Masai in paperback, I waited in anticipation of getting the DVD from the local library, albeit with some trepidations, knowing that film adaptations of books don't always follow true to the written work. That is certainly the case with this one. Firstly, why the change of names of the characters in the book - from Corinne to Carola, Lketinga to Lemalian, Napirai to Sarai, etc? Everyone who has read the book will know the characters anyway no matter what their names are. Also, there seem to be some vital points in the book that were not depicted in the movie. The novel extensively describes how Corinne's physical health was greatly affected from having to live in near-primitive conditions with nil in basic amenities like proper drinking water and sanitation, tropical diseases and inadequate diet. Doesn't it seem incongruous that in the movie this doesn't seem to be the case with Carola - she emerges from the hut cum loveshack each day fresh as a newly-budded rose, skin aglowing & hair shining like gold in the morning sun? She merely appears to be in a reality TV tour group rather than having assimilated herself into the tribe. It would certainly have helped to have a Westernized educated Samburu character to help bridge the (communication) gap between Carola and Lemalian, which in the book would have been James (Lketinga's brother). That said, the bottom line that both book and film raise is: can two people of contrastingly different cultures live together in harmony and genuine affection? How much is one prepared to sacrifice in the name of love? The film is aware of all these questions but does not give a definite answer - it all remains up to the viewer to put himself/herself in the heroine's shoes and ask "would I have done the same as Carola? Would I give up all the creature comforts of life that I've known and been accustomed to and live in woop-woop with a man I hardly know from a totally alien background?"

While the movie does portray non-whites in a more positive light than other movies with a similar theme, it continues the long history of inequivocal relations between whites and blacks in general and it concludes that the Africans have been and always will be culturally inferior to whites. Even though the film is sympathetic to the Samburu people and evidently shows how naive and clueless as far as cultural sensitivities go with Carola, it's telling her side of the story. It would be very interesting indeed if the movie would be (re)made from Lemalian's point of view, but alas that is just a pipe dream.

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