The Power of One (1992) Movie Script

I was born with the songs
of Zulu rainmakers in my ears.
They sang to end
the great drought
which burned the land
of South Africa
for 10 years.
My mother gave birth to me
3 weeks after my father died.
He was trampled to death
by a bull elephant
in the bush.
She gave me his name...
Peter Phillip Kenneth Keith...
but from the first day,
she called me
by my initials, P.K.,
just as she
had called my father.
"And start again
in your beginnings,
"and never breathe a word
about your loss.
"You can force your heart
and nerve and sinew
"to serve your turn
long after they are gone,
"and so, hold on when
there is nothing in you
"except the will
which says to them,
hold on."
I remember my mother telling me
that she was
a child of England,
where she grew up
with books and music,
but I was a child of Africa
and woke to the smell
of jacaranda blossoms
and fell asleep to the sound
of the weaverbirds
nesting for the night.
"You'll be a man, my son."
Nanny's son Tonderai
was my best friend.
From the time we were born,
we did everything together...
games, chores, and lessons.
Mother taught us about England.
Nanny taught us about Africa.
Mother said life was perfect
except it never rained.
Madam! Madam, come quickly.
It's bad... the cattle!
The cattle are dying!
My father was a farmer.
My mother was not.
Because she loved us so much,
she tried hard to be one
after he died,
but when the plague
killed our cattle,
something inside her broke
and never mended.
Nanny said the doctor insisted
my mother have complete rest.
She said I must go
to boarding school.
For the first time in my life,
I felt afraid.
I'd never been away
from home before,
away from my mother,
away from nanny.
I wanted to cry,
but I held it in.
I was afraid it would
hurt my mother even more.
Mummy's going to give you
the bracelet daddy gave mummy
when we first fell in love.
I love you, P.K.
She gave me
the ostrich-shell bracelet
my father gave her
when they first fell in love.
Be a good boy, darling.
Be good, P.K.
We were poor.
The only school we could afford
was run by Afrikaners,
the oldest of the two
white tribes in Africa.
The other,
being my people,
the English.
The English drove us
into the wilderness,
but we returned
stronger than before.
They spilled our blood
across the land,
but we returned
stronger than before.
Because this land is ours,
given to us in holy covenant
by almighty God,
it is our responsibility
to rise up
and push out the English,
to put down the black,
for the holy scripture
tells us...
Joshua 9:20...
"the children of ham
turned black for their sins.
"They shall be unto the rest
"hewers of wood
and drawers of water.
They shall be
as servants unto you."
It is our responsibility
to redeem that covenant,
to repossess the land,
to be stronger than before!
Let us pray.
I remember my first lesson.
In 1896,
the Afrikaners had tried
to overthrow
the government of the English,
but the English army
was too strong.
The English locked up
26,000 Afrikaner
women and children
into what they called
concentration camps.
Many of them died
from malaria, typhoid,
and Blackwater fever.
As the only English boy
at school,
I took the blame
for all those deaths.
And forgive us
our trespasses...
This was made clear to me
by the oldest boy at school,
Jaapie Botha.
...but deliver us from evil,
for thine is the kingdom,
the power, and the glory
forever and ever.
You know what P.K. Stands for?
Piss kop.
Piss head.
No, it doesn't. It stands for
Peter Phillip Kenneth Keith.
That's my name.
Let's piss on the piss kop.
Piss on the piss kop.
Let's go.
Piss kop.
Piss kop, piss kop.
P.K.'S going to love
to be pissed on.
Ah, he's ready,
aren't you, Rooinek?
We've been saving this
all day for you.
Tasty, eh, Rooinek?
Look up.
Come on. He's had enough.
Don't feel bad, piss kop.
We'll give you more tomorrow.
Whether it was
fear or shame or both,
I don't know,
but just after
the bullying in the shower,
I began to wet my bed.
I never should have left.
I should have stayed
to help take care of mother,
then she would have
been better.
I know she would have.
Thou shalt show me the path...
Since my only
other living relative,
my grandfather,
was away in the Congo,
it was decided by our solicitor
that I return
to boarding school,
a decision which terrified me.
...ashes to ashes,
dust to dust.
...piss kop.
I confided in nanny
what had happened
and how I'd become
a bed-wetter.
She did what any good
Zulu mother would do.
She called on the greatest
medicine man of her tribe,
a man who nanny said
could make sick men well
and scared men brave.
I had never seen anyone
like him before.
I said a silent prayer
that his magic was stronger
than my trouble.
His name was Dabula Manzi.
Dabula Manzi said
my troubles came from fear
deep in my heart.
He would send me on the journey
to discover courage
and bury my fear.
He drew three circles
of magic powder
on the ground,
placed a chicken in each one.
He said the chicken
who broke out of the circle
was the bravest.
He would be my guide
on the journey
to find my courage.
Dabula Manzi said
the spirit of the great
Zulu warriors
lived in me.
I'd faced the most powerful
creature on earth,
a creature I'd feared
since hearing about
how my father died.
I'd earned his respect
for my courage.
There'd be no more problem
with night water.
Dabula Manzi said I was
a man for all Africa,
bound to her by my spirit,
bound to her by my dreams.
He said I was no longer
a piss kop.
He gave me back my name,
and he let me keep the chicken.
I named my chicken Masibindi.
In Zulu,
that means mother courage.
During the day,
she would
hunt for bugs outside.
At night, she would
nest above my bed
and keep a sharp eye.
She was my best
and only friend.
A month later,
war broke out in Europe.
This caused me more problems
than bed-wetting ever had.
Hitler had vowed
to crush Great Britain
and drive the English
from South Africa.
The Afrikaners waited
for that day
with excitement.
I said Dabula Manzi's words
over and over to myself,
trying not to be afraid.
Piss kop,
God has sent Hitler
to deliver us
from you English bastards
who stole our country
and killed our people.
Heil Hitler!
We will swear a blood oath.
When Hitler comes,
we will rise up and kill
the verdomde Rooineks!
We swear allegiance
to Adolf Hitler.
Death to all Englishmen
in South Africa.
Heil Hitler!
God bless the fatherland.
Heil Hitler!
For crimes committed
against the Afrikaner people,
I, Jaapie Botha,
the judge and ber Fhrer,
sentence your Rooinek
Kaffir chicken to death.
Heil Hitler!
No, not my chicken!
Not my chicken!
No! Not my chicken!
Let my chicken go!
No! No! No!
Heil Hitler!
Heil Hitler!
Hang him up.
Hang him up.
Hang him up!
You will pay for the deaths
of our grandfathers
and grandmothers.
All English will pay,
and you will be first.
Heil Hitler!
In the name of Adolf Hitler
and the fatherland,
I sentence you to die,
verdomde Rooinek.
Kill him! Kill him!
Heil Hitler!
You dummkopf!
I buried Masibindi
the very next day.
Seemed I was to lose
everyone I'd ever loved
or had ever loved me...
my mother, my chicken,
and now nanny.
Tonderai and nanny
had to return to their family
in Southern Rhodesia.
I knew I'd never
see them again.
Loneliness birds seemed
to fly into my heart
and lay large stone eggs.
My whole body
hurt with sadness.
My grandfather came home
from the Congo
to his house in Barberton,
where English people lived.
I was sent to live with him.
Children, he said,
were a complete mystery to him.
I did not think
I'd ever feel better again.
I did not know
how to chase
the loneliness birds away.
Then one day,
grandfather sent a friend
of his to see me.
You know, my donkey Beethoven
once told me a remedy
of curing sadness
in little boys.
Would you like to try it?
Good. Stand up.
That's a boy.
On one leg.
Good. Good.
And close your eyes.
Say three times, "absooloodle."
absooloodle, absooloodle.
Well, wonderful. Feel better?
I guess it proves
one thing, then.
What's that?
Never take advice
from a donkey.
Much, much better, yes?
Would you like to meet him?
Yes, please.
Let's go.
What... what is your name?
Oh, very interesting name.
I will introduce you
to the Beethoven.
That was how I met doc,
who collected cacti,
played piano,
and showed me how to talk
to his donkey Beethoven.
He likes you very, very much.
So, my old friend, you have
a very bright grandson.
Very bright.
I wish I knew what
to do about it.
His mother, God rest her soul,
was qualified,
taught him to read,
taught him to play piano.
Music is such an important part
in a young man's education,
don't you agree?
How could I not?
I'm a musician.
Music is my life.
What do you think
of this proposal?
You take P.K. Under your wing,
teach him the piano,
and he will be chief assistant
in your cactus garden.
He pays you, you pay him.
With great pleasure.
He reminds me of Eric.
Your grandson.
How old is he now?
He would be 7 now.
Doc was a famous pianist
who gave concerts
all over the world.
While he was in South Africa,
the war broke out.
He couldn't go home.
In Germany, Hitler
killed doc's whole family
'cause they believed in peace.
Doc's grandson was killed, too.
He was only 7, just like me.
Doc was all alone in the world.
Doc said a person needed
2 things in life...
good health and good education.
He said my health was good,
but my education
needed immediate attention.
Doc showed me Africa.
He made Africa my classroom.
I even learned
how to drive Beethoven.
My lessons began
every day at sunrise.
Doc showed me how to look
at things differently
than I ever had before.
And so, the brain, P.K.,
has 2 functions.
It's the best
reference library ever,
which is a good thing to have,
but also from it
comes original thought.
In school, you'll get
all filled up with the facts.
Out here, your brain
will learn where to look,
how to look, and how to think.
Any question you ever have,
the answer you
will find in nature
if you know where to look
and how to ask.
And then you will
have for yourself
all the brains
that have ever been.
One by one,
the loneliness birds flew away
with the stone eggs
they'd laid in my heart.
Doc said there were
so many things to learn
that we couldn't waste
even one second.
Mother used to say
the same thing.
Mother would have liked doc.
Everything in nature
is cooperation,
even moonlight.
Without the sun,
the moon would
be a dark circle,
but with cooperation...
Ooh, a bit heavy, isn't it?
Oh, that's a big one.
That's a big one. Hmm.
Hold its roots.
Hmm, looks like
we have visitors.
Maybe we offer them tea, huh?
Maybe a cactus.
Yes, maybe both, huh?
Or breakfast.
Let's unplant one
and give it to them.
That's a good idea.
How are you today, captain?
Cup of tea?
Professor Von Vollenstein?
By order of his
majesty's government,
for the failure to register
as an alien citizen,
you're hereby remanded
to Barberton prison
for the duration of the war with
Germany, your country of origin.
You will come with me.
It was then I realized
that the Afrikaners
were not the only ones
to hate and fear others.
The English were in for
their fair share as well.
The loneliness birds
began to circle again.
Come on! Come on!
Let's go!
While the English
saw doc as the enemy,
the Afrikaner prison
saw him as the perfect
example of German culture,
something they admired.
You can put your garden
on that side
and plant all
your cactus there.
Every day after school,
my grandfather would
walk me down to the prison
and fetch me home at sundown.
I would bring my bucket
with a cactus wrapped
in a tobacco leaf
to keep it moist.
Take those books away!
Kommandant Van Zyl
brought doc's piano
into the prison
and allowed me
unrestricted visits.
Open the door!
Don't drop
this bloody piano now!
All right, now turn
it on its side, then.
Damn it!
Come on!
Don't you know how
to move a bloody piano?
I will get this
in there for you.
The tobacco leaf,
leave in the bucket.
So, soon is your
school evaluation.
It was today, actually,
wasn't it?
What are your marks?
What marks?
Oh, oh, oh, that's a shame.
The P.K. I know is a lot
more than satisfactory.
He's a brain.
In my school,
you get beaten up
if you're a brain.
P.K., to have a brain,
it's not a sin.
To have a brain and not use it,
that is a sin.
I will introduce you to someone
who will show you
how to use your brain
to keep from getting beaten up.
It's a very smart man.
I will introduce you.
I asked doc
if it was the lieutenant.
He said the lieutenant
would say he's too busy.
That's it.
That's it, man.
I have the permission
to come in.
All right, Professor.
Come on, move!
Keep moving, boys.
Come on.
Keep your left up.
Left jab.
Would it be too much trouble
for my friend P.K.
To learn some boxing?
I'd really like
to help, Professor,
but we all very busy preparing
for the
inter-prison championships,
both the junior
and the senior divisions.
How about the old man?
All right.
Hey, Kaffir.
Come here.
Yes, meneer.
Now, listen.
Teach this boy the basics,
and teach him good.
Otherwise I knock
your black head flat.
Yes, meneer.
You want to be a boxer?
I think I'm too little.
Not to worry, Klein baas.
Little beat big
when little smart.
First with the head...
Then with the heart.
You can remember that?
Yes, sir.
No, little baas.
You must never,
never call me sir.
Because of the guards?
What should I call you?
I am Geel Piet.
I am P.K.
When I first met Geel Piet,
he'd spent 40 of his 55 years
in one prison or another.
He told me he'd been
a thief, a con man,
and lots of other things.
Now he was my teacher...
And my friend.
There, now. You see
how it can work?
You see how little beat big?
Can't catch you, can't hit you.
Can't hit you, can't hurt you.
Oh, after only 2 months,
you a wizard.
But when do I get to punch?
Oh, man, you not
going to just punch.
You going to combination, eh?
Go on. You try.
1-2. Yes. 1-2. 1-2.
Ohh, that's it.
Do we have a boxer here?
Ja, man.
We going to build for you
eight-punch combination, hmm?
The Geel Piet eight, yo?
Geel Piet eight?
Then, by Jove,
you catch fire, hmm?
Come, now. 1-2.
Oh, very strong.
Good punching. Very strong.
Oh, that's it.
That's good, little baas.
Bravo. You look like
a champion already.
Oh, what a boxer we have here.
I'm going to learn
the Geel Piet eight.
But right now you have to learn
the Beethoven ninth for an hour
so we can get to the cactus
before it's too hot to plant.
Between the two of us,
we'll make from you
a champion...
And a brain.
Your lesson... wonderful.
Ganz wonderful. Thank you.
Oh, excuse me,
meneer Professor.
Every time I see
the little baas
bring the cactus,
inside the bucket
is some tobacco leaf.
Yes. It keeps the roots wet.
That's the reason.
So, ja...
Well, you know, Professor...
Little smoke late at night
only little pleasure we
have in this hard life, man.
They make it difficult
to have the tobacco.
Why won't they
let you have tobacco?
Because, P.K.,
when it is a person's
job to punish,
it's all they know how to do.
I smell something
not right here.
Eh, Kaffir?
No, meneer sergeant.
Everything ok.
It's enough, sergeant.
That's enough, sergeant.
It's enough!
Here we say what
is enough, Professor,
not you.
If you're up to something.
I'll find out.
This old Kaffir, he ok. He ok.
Everything ok.
Sorry to make trouble.
Sorry, little baas.
Now on, we just stick
to the boxing.
Sorry, man.
Geel Piet.
I leave my bucket
on the side of the piano
when I practice.
See it is cleaned out
every day.
Yes, baas. Ja.
Nice, P.K. Nice.
I don't like that
Schwinn none, either.
Ja, er ist ein Schwinn.
Let's go.
Ok, doc.
To survive in prison,
Geel Piet became an expert
in camouflage...
A master of the invisible.
His goal was to draw
as little attention to himself
while getting exactly what he
and his fellow
prisoners needed.
Ja, ja.
Good, little baas.
Ja, ja.
5 years passed
before I knew it,
and while outside the prison,
everyone waited anxiously
for the end of world war ii,
inside, everyone was concerned
with just one thing...
the outcome of the inter-prison
boxing championships.
That's great!
And under Geel Piet's
constant tutelage,
I became champion
in my weight class.
Very good, little baas.
Doc's garden grew
as he planted
and fertilized the cacti
I continued to bring him,
setting aside the tobacco
for Geel Piet
and the other prisoners.
I also became
the unofficial letter writer
at Geel Piet's suggestion.
Ja, man...
You really have the gift
of the language, you know.
That song
about the rainmaker...
why are they always
singing it around me?
All right, then.
Time's up. Move it!
All the tribes believe,
little baas,
that when there is drought,
it is because...
The people are in conflict.
Inyanga ye Zulu,
the rainmaker...
Cools things down...
the earth, the sky...
The people.
He... he stops the conflict.
He brings the rain.
He brings the peace, man.
Ok, fine.
But what does it
got to do with me?
Well, Klein baas,
you like inyanga ye Zulu.
You cool things down, man.
You write the letters
for all the tribes,
you bring the tobacco
for all the tribes.
Naturally, they think
maybe you are the one
from the myth.
They sing to honor you.
Did you have anything
to do with this?
I... I...
Say to a few people
how you... Treat all
the tribes equally,
how you not show favoritism
for one tribe over another,
how you cool things down,
something like that.
Well, little baas,
little hope never hurt no one.
Ja, but it's false hope.
Better than no hope at all.
Time for Beethoven, P.K.
Ah, thank you, Professor.
It's my pleasure.
You and the men,
enjoy the tobacco.
See you tomorrow... Rainmaker.
Empty the bucket, Kaffir.
Yes, baas.
You are a bunch of shit-eaters,
aren't you, Kaffir?
No, baas.
What you say?
Yes, baas.
Bloody right.
Now, get eating.
Eat it.
Eat it.
You can't hide from me
forever, Kaffir.
Your day will come,
and it'll be as black
as your bloody soul,
I promise you.
You all right?
Not to worry, little baas.
In the trunk, we eat
shit every day.
All of us.
If the sergeant
had found the tobacco,
all the prisoners would've
been beaten severely.
And so the other prisoners
sang to honor
Geel Piet's courage.
But it still broke my heart
to see a man I loved
so degraded.
And it also made me angry...
Angry that it was done...
Angry that I couldn't
do anything to change it.
They sang into the night,
knowing full well they'd
be locked in their cells
for 3 days with no water.
They sang to honor
Geel Piet's dignity.
Dance. Dance. Dance. Dance.
They look confused.
They are confused, little baas.
They are confused.
They are afraid.
They are cowards.
Let us get these towels
to the laundry.
P.K.! P.K.! Good news!
The Americans
have crossed the Rhine.
The war... the war
is almost over!
That's brilliant.
Quick. Let me see.
Isn't it wonderful?
You will be free, Professor.
At last I go home to Germany.
Go home to Germany?
Yes, I go home to Germany!
Isn't that wonderful,
little baas?
I suppose so.
But he doesn't think
it's so wonderful, eh?
If you go back to Germany,
I'll never see you again.
I don't think
that's so wonderful.
Ja, youre right. It's not.
Sometimes we must
try to take...
To take what's not wonderful
and make it so.
Ah, Professor.
I just heard the news.
Ja. Here. We were
just discussing it.
Professor, we are
going to miss you.
Thank you.
I wonder if I can
ask you a favor.
At the end of this month,
the commissioner
is paying his yearly visit.
Can you organize a concert
in his honor?
A concert here?
A concert? A c...
ja, I... I will
arrange something
for the commissioner.
You're a good man, Professor.
Thank you very much.
Ja, we are going to
miss you, eh?
Why do you want a concert
for these people?
No, Professor, not for them.
For us, man. Yes.
You can write the music.
Little baas here
can write the words.
And the people's voices,
The people's voices
can be your instruments, eh?
They'll never guess
who it's for.
He's a genius.
The tribes don't even
talk to each other.
To sing together...
it will never happen.
It will if the
little baasssay so.
Remember the myth.
You mean the one you invented.
What you talking, little baas?
I didn't invent it.
The myth is as old as Africa.
To the people,
myth is stronger than love,
stronger than hate.
It gives them reason
to do what they would never do.
You ask. You'll see.
Ja, the myth.
The myth.
You are a genius.
You're the smartest
of us all.
I just finished the lyrics.
They're about the guards.
That's wonderful.
Let me hear.
Ayalena, ayalena...
in English, please.
English, please.
They run this way,
they run that way.
They are confused,
they are afraid.
They are cowards.
That's excellent.
It fits them perfectly.
It's from something
geel Piet said.
Even better.
But will it fit in
with the music?
Oh, let's see. Let's see.
Something is wrong?
No. It's beautiful.
But do you like it like this?
Having obtained the cooperation
of all the tribal groups,
as geel Piet predicted,
I set out to instruct them.
A handful of men
from each tribe
were chosen to
learn their tribe's part.
They, in turn, taught others,
who taught others,
until everyone knew his part.
Whoa! Whoa!
What are these monkeys
singing about?
I don't know.
I only play piano.
Have you seen geel Piet?
He hasn't arrived yet.
Don't worry.
It's his night, his creation.
He will come, boy, believe me.
Evening, kommandant.
Sit! Sit down!
Herr kommandant,
P.K. Is excellent translator.
You can speak their babble?
Yes, sir.
I always have.
All right. I want you
to tell them
the only reason
I'm allowing this concert
is to honor the visit
of the commissioner
and his lovely friend...
And also out of respect
for the Professor.
Even if he is in prison,
he's not a dirty criminal
like the rest of them!
He's a man of culture,
Tell them that.
For such a man,
I am prepared to do this,
but one hair of trouble,
just one...
It's finished. Tell them that.
One wrong move, just one,
and they'll be
the sorriest Kaffirs
in the whole of Africa!
Tell them that.
What are they clapping for?
They respect strength,
sir kommandant.
Well done, P.K. Well done.
But... but geel Piet
is still not here.
He will come.
He will come, believe me.
Now the music, P.K.
Now the music.
This concert was your idea...
Wasn't it?
You tricky bastard.
No, baas.
Don't lie to me.
Your friends
can't help you now,
and you're going to
tell me all your secrets,
starting with the song.
What are they singing?
I... I don't know, baas.
tell me.
Tell me.
They run... This way...
They... Run... That way.
They are...
We are afraid?
We are afraid?
You are... Cowards.
You bastard!
No. No, Piet.
Little baas.
Piet, no, please.
All the tribes together.
First time...
Because of you...
No, please.
Little defeat... Big.
When little... Is smart.
First with the head...
And then with the heart.
Piet, no. No, no...
Hearing the tribes
singing together,
geel Piet dropped
his camouflage
and defied sergeant Bormann.
For that one brief moment,
he was a free man...
Before he died.
"The war ended.
"Doc went home to Germany,
"and once again,
I was left alone,
"fending off
the loneliness birds,
"trying as doc
and geel Piet had taught me
"to turn my sadness
into something wonderful,
"because no matter how much
"I wanted to believe I could...
My heart would never let me."
Very evocative.
Singing... Dying...
Powerful images.
Well done.
Any ideology that needs
to attack the thing
that least threatens it...
Is an ideology that will not
outlive its own generation.
not exclusion, gentlemen,
is the key to survival.
Something our new
Afrikaaner government
should take heed of, eh?
Next week, we have
Mr. Guilbert,
who will enlighten us
on the subject of, um...
sport and wager
in imperial Rome, sir.
Very apt, Mr. Guilbert.
We shall look forward
to the experience.
One moment, gentlemen.
On my recommendation,
Oxford university has agreed
to consider you both
as candidates
for matriculation.
Thank you, sir.
In light of your
financial situation, P.K.,
I took the liberty of making
an application for you
for a government scholarship.
If you'll just sign here,
we'll file it immediately.
Thank you, sir.
Thank you.
Your mother will be
pleased, Mr. Guilbert.
She'll be surprised, sir.
Thank you.
Oh, one thing more.
Was justice ever served?
This man Bormann...
Geel Piet...
It was, sir.
Sergeant Bormann
was found a month later
hanging from a rope
in geel Piet's cell.
What the hell happened?
You were killing him.
That girl...
Find out who she is.
Are you bonkers?
We bet every pound we have.
You lose, we're paupers.
Find out who she is.
We thank the native population
for this spirited display...
And in the interest
of good sportsmanship,
I must insist...
Get back in there.
Thank you, God.
He's out!
The winner,
prince of Wales school...
P.K. Keith!
Come on, let's go.
Any more? Any more?
That's it. A bit more.
That's very kind of you.
Thank you very much.
Any more?
Sorry, sir.
It's all set...
4:30 tomorrow at his gym.
Hoppie Gruenewald himself.
What about the girl?
Forget the girl.
I'm not going
to forget the girl.
Her father's Dr. Daniel Marais.
It makes no difference at all.
You can't ignore the fact
that the man's the
intellectual darling
of the nationalist party.
He's got as much use for an
English boy rutting after
his purebred Afrikaner daughter
as the queen has for balls,
- pardon my French.
- Morrie.
Maria Elizabeth Marais...
seniors quarters,
room 22, Devilliers school.
Fortress virgin? Odds are 10-1
you even don't
get in the place.
oh, no. Please.
You can't be here.
I didn't know
how else to meet you.
I could be expelled.
You could be expelled
for attending
boxing matches, too.
We went on a dare.
Did you like it?
It was...
You were very good.
Thank you.
Will you see me?
I can't.
My father would never
give me permission
to see an English boy.
How about your permission?
What about my father?
Dr. Marais...
P.K., they'll hear you.
I don't remember
telling you my name.
I don't remember
telling you mine.
Maria! Maria! Johann smuts
gave Margaret a ring!
I'll be there in a minute.
Your father, Saturday.
May I call on him?
Good night.
Be careful.
I knew she was different
from the first time I saw her.
I'll find a way.
There's no way.
She's a waste of time.
You don't know what
you're talking about.
Don't I?
Your future father-in-law.
If the man had his way,
he'd get rid of us
along with them.
You know your problem?
Lack of confidence.
Where's your papers?
I'll teach you! Take that!
You're killing my back!
What are you staring at?
Move along!
Come on.
Please! Help me, please!
Please, sir! Help me!
Bloody country's gone to hell.
Come on.
Wish we were
at Oxford yesterday.
I must have made
the right impression.
He takes no one on.
You know that?
Go ahead.
You know who that is?
Yes. It's Andreas Malan.
He's signed to fight
Joe Louis, you know.
Let's go say hello.
Mr. Gruenewald.
What, you boys lost?
It's me, sir...
morrie Guilbert.
I came here yesterday,
About my man.
Oh, ja, ja, ja.
The champion, right?
Yes, sir.
And who are you?
I'm his manager.
Now, look here.
You train in this gym,
it's not like these
nice schoolboy fights.
Yes, sir.
What's it cost for you
to train him personally?
For my personal
attention, Mr. manager,
I'd say, uh... 15 a month.
15 a month. That's...
that's 90.
That's very reasonable.
Uh, here's 6 months in advance.
6 months?
I don't know
he's going to last 6 minutes.
There's only one way
to find out, sir.
Oh, ja?
All right. Let's
find out, then.
All right. Time out.
Come here.
Eight-punch combination.
Where did you learn
such a thing?
In prison, sir.
Are you trying to be
a comedian or a boxer?
A boxer, sir.
Right. Come on.
you come to my office.
We'll talk terms.
Mr. champion,
you go and get showered.
You come see me afterwards.
We'll talk training.
Any questions?
Yes, sir. How do you
get away with this?
Get away with what?
The mixing.
Oh, ja.
Well, we Afrikaners
are funny people sometimes.
Outside the ring,
a black man is not equal.
Inside he is,
but not in public.
Only in private.
It's crazy, ja?
Hey. You're good.
An eight-punch combination.
It's good.
Thank you, sir.
How do you do?
I'm Professor Marais.
Pleased to meet you,
sir. I'm P.K.
Admiring the art?
Yes, sir.
It's Maria's family history
from 1688 all the way
to the present.
That's my great-uncle,
Jan Piet.
He led a commando at 22
until your people caught him
and hanged him.
You mean the English?
I'm a South African, sir.
So am I.
So are the Zulus, the Xhosa,
the Pongo, the Ndebele,
the Sotho...
we're all South Africans,
just from separate tribes.
Some say all our problems
would be solved
if we stopped thinking
of South Africa
in terms of separate tribes.
Separation of things
is not coincidental.
Do you think a Zulu
wants to see his culture,
his sense of identity
by someone else's, hmm?
Any more than I do mine?
No, sir. But I don't think
he wants being a Zulu
to mean he's denied
the same rights
that you and I enjoy.
Laws define rights.
I agree, sir.
But do they always
define justice?
Justice, young man,
is only relative
to who's in charge.
Quite true, sir.
But perhaps how long
they stay in charge
is relative to how well
they dispense that justice.
You come here
to ask for my permission
to see my daughter.
And knowing who I am
and what I stand for,
do you really believe disagreeing
with me will serve your cause?
I thought a man of your
intellectual reputation
wouldn't want his daughter
seeing someone
who didn't think.
Intellectual reputation or not,
I'm in the first place
a Marais,
a member of my tribe, my folk.
If you want to impress
me with your intellect,
don't do it by espousing
liberal ideas
procured in an English
private school.
I'm sorry. I won't
give you permission
to see my daughter.
For the record, sir,
I procured my ideas
long before I began
English private school.
From an English expert
on race relations, no doubt.
Actually, sir,
from a German expert on cacti.
But that's a long story.
Good day.
You wanted to see us,
Mr. Gruenewald?
Ja. Come in.
This is Mr. Elias Mlungisi.
He promotes all the fights
in Alexandria township.
He's come to propose
a fight for you
with one of his boxers...
Gideon Duma.
Black and white fights
are illegal.
Where would the match be held?
In Alexandria.
After we're arrested
for the fight,
we'll be arrested
for being in a township.
You endorse this, sir?
Ja. There are risks, but, uh...
Strictly talking boxing,
it's a match I'd pay to see.
You were at the championship
last week?
Yes. You're a good boxer.
Why were the people singing?
I don't know.
Morrie's right.
This fight's not for us.
Will that be all, sir?
Ja. Well... That'll be all.
Thank you.
You're both a slice
short of a loaf.
There was no phone listed.
I was going to leave this.
What is it?
Since my father
wouldn't give you
his permission to see me,
I decided I would
give you mine.
How do you do?
I'm morrie Guilbert,
the level-headed one.
How do you do?
Actually, I could do
with some fresh air.
Shall we?
I thought race mixing
was illegal.
It is.
So how does he
get away with it up there?
We keep wondering
the same thing.
You train there?
For a couple of weeks.
With the natives?
Mr. P.K.
Excuse me, Mr. P.K.
I did not mean to be
dishonest in my answer,
but I did not want
to make public
things you have kept private.
Then tell me about the singing.
In bad times,
people do what they know,
and all they know
is the myth of inyanga ye Zulu,
the rainmaker.
Listen to me.
I'm not that person.
This was all made up by a man
at Barberton prison.
Yes. Geel Piet.
I know you, don't I?
I worked in the laundry.
Yes. Of course. Then you know
what I'm saying is true.
Geel Piet made this all up.
That's why you must
fight me. I'm Gideon Duma.
My people lose everything
out of this damn apartheid.
They can't put their hope
in stories.
Hope doesn't come from a myth.
It comes from here.
We make our own hope,
our own future.
The people must see that.
Just because you beat
some Afrikaner schoolboy
does not mean you are anything
but another schoolboy yourself.
I must beat you
to teach them that.
But what if he beats you?
Then I become
his number one supporter
and use the myth
to get everyone moving.
I will do anything...
anything to help my people.
Use anything.
Do you understand?
What's this here?
Family servants, officer.
I called them in.
My gear needs mending.
They're taking it home.
Papers, man. Come on. Be quick!
Where are you coming from?
The gym, sir. I train there.
You've an hour till curfew
and a long way to go.
You got a problem with that?
Hey! You black bastard!
No, baas.
Then get moving.
You let me know
when I should come collect it.
Don't take too long!
Do you hear?!
Yes, baas.
Are you all right?
My God, you lied to the police!
He doesn't work for you.
I had no choice.
I've never been so scared.
Me, neither.
I thought the officers
would do them over right here.
I mean the natives.
They scare me.
Not as much as we scare them.
They have nothing
to be afraid of from us.
They don't? Really?
Do you know many?
Natives? Well...
I don't really have
the opportunity, do I?
If you did, would you take it?
Ja. I would.
Even if it meant
going against your
father's orders?
What do you call this?
Checkmate, old boy.
Last bus.
You're extraordinary.
There's a young man...
at prince of Wales school.
I'd like you
to have a look at him.
I'll get back
to you, Professor,
as soon as I have something.
Do that.
And this is the best
part of town, miss.
You never do get used to it.
Let's go. We can't
be late for the boxing.
My name is Miriam Sisulu.
Uh, hello. I'm Maria Marais.
You looked cold.
Please take my blanket.
Oh, no, no, no. I'm fine.
It will keep you warm.
No, really. I don't need it.
It's all right.
I'll return it at
the end of the fight.
Keep it. Really.
I couldn't possibly.
It's my pleasure.
Uh, Miriam.
Thank you.
You're welcome, Maria.
You are listening
to me, please.
When I am saying break,
you must break at once.
No hits below the waist.
You are fighting clean, or, by
golly, I am giving penalty points.
Touch gloves. Good luck, boys.
Now, look.
Don't try to fight him.
You box him, you hear me?
Don't let him set the pace.
Go in behind the left jab.
Box him. Box him.
On you go.
Keep your guard up!
Jab him!
Jab him, P.K.!
Don't fight him! Box him!
Let's go, boys.
Box with your head, man.
You're not listening.
Look for his weakness.
You must find his weakness.
I can't find one.
You must find one!
Look. He's taking water.
And where that water
goes, you go,
right down to here.
Put your punches there,
you win.
If you don't, you lose.
Remember the stomach.
That's it.
In the corner! In the corner!
Get up, Sonny! Get up!
Get up, son! Get up!
Come on!
You got him!
He's out! He's out!
Nice knowing you, hoppie.
The rainmaker!
Inyanga ye Zulu!
Now we are in business.
What business?
The myth business.
Inyanga ye Zulu!
My nanny who raised me,
she lived in Alexandria.
I really loved her.
But I never thought about
who she really was, though...
Where she lived...
How she lived.
I always thought
when she went home,
it was to a house like ours.
Just smaller.
Just smaller.
Who'd want to imagine
someone you love
living in Alexandria?
Come on! Quick!
I'd better go.
Ah, yes. Of course.
I... I'll never forget tonight
as long as I live.
Thank you.
You're welcome.
Good night.
The senior ball
is next Saturday.
I'd like very much
if you escorted me.
What about your father?
I'll talk to him.
He'll understand.
He will.
You'll see.
Just say yes,
and let me worry
about the rest.
Thank you.
Good night. Good...
night. Thank you.
Duma! Duma!
The rainmaker's coming!
Oh, the rainmaker!
Good morning, rainmaker!
How are you doing
this morning, rainmaker?
Gideon, I have to
tell you, I'm not
very comfortable doing this.
Doing what? But we
are training, anyway.
People see us
doing it together.
Maybe your magic rub off on me.
There is no magic.
Look who's here.
Good morning.
Please sit.
This is my new friend P.K.
Miriam Sisulu
and her new class.
Hello. You fought
well last night.
Thank you.
I see he got you, too.
He has me convinced to teach
these sweet children,
even though I don't know
how to do it.
Come on. You're
a natural teacher.
Just look how nice...
They said she's a good teacher.
You speak Zulu?
Give my regards to Maria, huh?
I will.
See you. Bye-bye.
Watch out for him.
You are shameless, Gideon Duma.
He can convince snakes to walk.
She knows you.
We are to be
married next month.
She's going to have
her hands full.
Come on.
What's the queue for?
The toilet.
The government allows only one
for every 200 people.
The law says only 2% of us
can go to school.
You know what you learn there?
Enough bloody Afrikaans
to be maids,
street sweepers,
or... or mine slaves.
We can't even read
the bloody apartheid signs
to tell us where we aren't
allowed to go.
You know, we hope for a good
tomorrow in South Africa,
but if we don't learn to do
for ourselves as equals,
that hope will disappear.
And my people will grow tired.
The tired will grow angry,
and the angry
will grow violent,
and there will be no good
tomorrow in this country
for anybody, black or white.
What are you saying, Gideon?
I want you to start a school
to teach my people
to read and write English.
I said yes
to this running together,
but I can't teach
millions of people
to read or write English.
You taught singing in prison.
That was different.
What was different?
The tribes sang together
because of the myth.
They came last night
because of the myth.
They'll come again
because of the myth.
A myth we don't even believe.
Damn belief! Damn belief!
I believe in Africa.
I believe in my people.
I want to believe
in the future.
Then what do you believe in?
Mind your mouth, Kaffir!
Whites got to stay back
when blacks walk by.
What do you believe in?
Tell me. What?
What do you believe in?
Any question you ever have...
The answer
you'll find in nature.
We can hold the class
on Saturday night
in the study room.
No one's around.
With your permission,
of course, sir.
It's Afrikaner law
we're living under
now, gentlemen.
We're aware of that, sir.
And you're asking me
to break that law
and possibly jeopardize
the survival of the school.
You've taught us that
inclusion, not exclusion,
is the key to survival, sir.
How will they ever be included
if they can't read
or write English?
I quite agree with you, P.K.,
but at the end of the day,
it's only about a dozen people
you're talking about teaching,
and how much difference
will that really make?
A waterfall begins with
only one drop of water, sir.
Look what comes from that.
How clever of you, P.K.
Thank you, sir.
Have a good weekend,
miss Marais.
Thank you. You, too.
Have a good weekend, girls.
Come here.
I've got great news.
Listen, I'm going to
talk to my father tonight
about the ball.
He won't have time to say no.
He wouldn't let me miss it,
and there's no one
else to go with.
I have a whole speech
prepared. Want to hear it?
You won't have to. Duma
asked us to start a school.
The head gave us permission
to use the study room.
We're starting tomorrow night.
Will you join us?
Tomorrow night?
The senior ball's
tomorrow night.
Maria, this is important.
Well, the senior ball's
important to me.
Look, I thought
you'd understand.
All I understand
is I'm not going
to my senior ball
because you want
to change the world!
That's what I understand.
Maria, listen to me.
Thank you.
I wish they could be here
without being here.
Now, that might be tolerable.
Before my lovely daughter
and Jacob and Anita's
handsome son
go off to her senior ball,
I'd like to mark the occasion
by wishing them both
happiness and a bright future,
and who knows,
maybe a common future.
Phillip and Maria.
Mmm, speaking about the future,
I'd like to take a moment
to announce to you all
that, after careful
I've decided to leave
the university
and accept
the prime minister's offer
to join the cabinet.
So he agreed to accept
your residential permit plan
in full?
Without one revision.
Why shouldn't he?
The only Kaffirs
allowed to live
in the townships
are ones we need to
work here. The rest
all the rest should go
back where they belong.
I mean, that's why the homeland
was created, isn't it?
Just by getting rid
of the children,
the slums will empty
by more than half.
Perhaps we should create a
homeland for the English, too.
That's a good idea.
I'll take it up
with the prime minister.
A toast.
To the Marais
residential permit plan,
to apartheid.
To apartheid.
That doesn't seem fair.
I beg your pardon, Maria?
That doesn't seem fair.
What doesn't?
Their homelands
are hundreds of miles away.
I wouldn't want to
have the government
telling me I
couldn't live with you
if you worked in
Pretoria or cape town
and I didn't have a permit.
The plan doesn't apply to us.
It shouldn't apply
to anyone, I think.
Maria, when you know
nothing about a subject,
it's best to say nothing.
I... I know what I've read.
I know what I've seen.
So what have you seen?
I've seen Alexandria.
With that English boy?
Answer me!
When you're not at school,
you will be confined
to this house.
You will no longer be
allowed outside unaccompanied.
You are forbidden to ever
see him again, Maria!
Now excuse yourself.
You will learn there's a price
to pay for disobeying me!
If this is the price for
seeing an English boy,
what's the price
for seeing a Jewish one?
I won't tolerate this, Maria!
- Go to your room!
- Or how about a black?
What's the price for
seeing a black, father?
I won't hate like you!
I won't!
Is it all right?
Lovely weather we're having.
Come on.
Right through that door.
Come on. You'll get wet.
Despite the government's
best efforts
to keep you from learning
to read or write English,
you few have managed to do so.
That's no small accomplishment.
What we hope to do here tonight
is to take your knowledge
one step further
and to teach you
to teach English to others
so that one day,
God willing,
each of you will be standing
in front of a class
doing exactly what
I'm doing here tonight.
Now, there are
2 types of letters...
consonants and vowels.
Morrie is pointing
to the vowels.
and "U."
Each vowel has a long sound
and a short sound.
We'll start
with the long sound.
If you'll repeat after me.
I, uh...
Thought you might
need some help.
Come in.
You wanted to see us, sir?
Yes, come in. Close the door.
This is Colonel Bretyn
of the police department
and his aide sergeant Botha.
He's come to deliver an order
to close the Saturday school.
Can he do this, sir?
We can have the school closed
and leveled in 24 hours, boy.
Come now, Meneersheadmaster.
Let us end this now.
I have a full day
ahead of me still.
The Saturday school
will be disbanded
until further notice.
Permanently, meneer.
Yes. Permanently.
Thank you, meneer.
Your cooperation
in this respect
will be noted in my report.
Good day.
Is that really
the end of it, sir?
For the moment,
I'm afraid it is.
Sir, if we let them
get away with it
on our own grounds,
it will never change.
History disputes you.
History takes too long.
Yes, I know it does,
but it's never kind
to those who try to hurry it.
Will that be all, sir?
Yes, thank you.
Oh, one more thing.
I know this may be no
consolation to you,
but these arrived this morning.
You're both accepted to Oxford.
Thank you.
Full scholarship to you, P.K.
Thank you, sir.
That'll do.
Thank you.
That was him, wasn't it? Botha.
Yes. Is your uncle still
vicar at Saint Martin's?
Still vicar
and liberal as ever.
Get back!
Piss kop!
I owe you something,
you little bastard!
I was beaten by my father
for the shame of being
I was made to live in the barn!
I was not allowed
to go back to school!
My life was shit!
You can't be serious.
You tried to kill me.
I was branded an idiot
by everyone who knew.
They knew you well.
Gideon, no! No!
Bloody Kaffir.
This is not...
no more!
No more.
You may be the
heavyweight champion
of our country,
but you're a disgrace to it!
I'm going to see
this race-mixing hole
closed down.
You want to close
this place down?
You can well go ahead and try.
I don't need animals in here.
It's already full of animals.
I'm not finished with you...
Or the Marais girl.
I went to your room at school.
I looked everywhere.
I was so worried.
Where have you been?
My father is sending me
to live with my aunt
in Pretoria.
He said if I
ever see you again,
he'd have you arrested
and ruin your life.
He can't ruin my life.
I've been accepted
to Oxford.
Come with me.
To England?
Yes. To England.
Away from here.
I go to Pretoria tomorrow
morning first thing.
I graduate from school
in a month.
I'll come fetch you
first thing.
You promise?
I promise.
It was my mother's.
My father gave it to her
when they first fell in love.
I love you.
Black and white together.
They won't like that.
To hell with what they like.
I train fighters,
not bloody ostriches
that stick their head
in the sand and pretend
there's no trouble
if they can't see it.
I train them
to stand in that ring
and dare their opponent
to get the better of them.
I can't teach one way
and behave another,
not anymore, I can't.
You know how to paint?
A bit.
Go on.
Bloody Nazis!
Take your hands off me, man!
Bloody Nazis!
Take your hands off me!
Take your hands off me, man.
Mr. Gruenewald!
Get back, Sonny.
Everybody out! Now!
Be a man, Sonny!
Don't let them break you!
No! It's only rubbish!
Bloody rubbish!
Follow your heart.
Do what you think is right!
Mr. Gruenewald! Mr. Gruenewald!
You bloody Kaffir boetie!
You're rubbish, Botha!
You're a shame on our people!
Piss kop!
You rubbish!
Good evening.
Everyone, come in.
Did you get the report
back from the doctor?
Oh, yes.
He said one works
as good as two.
Gideon, it was me
they came for me.
If I could give you
my eye, I would.
I know. I know. Don't worry.
I think 20 teachers
are more important than 1 eye.
I mean it. I mean it.
I'll be fine.
I'll be fine.
You see, you've got
a job to do.
Do it.
I want to thank you all
for having the courage to come.
Maria, will she be coming?
No. Her father sent
her to Pretoria.
We'll start with the chapter
on the conjugation of verbs.
Joshua, please start.
"To be."
From the sound of it,
it's probably my uncle.
Continue, Joshua.
"I am."
"You are."
"He is."
It seems we have a visitor.
I, uh, thought you might
be able to use these.
You're mad.
There's work to be done.
I can't believe it.
I brought some pencils.
Oh, how wonderful!
There you go.
Ask and you shall receive.
Amen! Amen!
Now that Maria's
back here with us,
we'll start again.
Joshua, if you will, please.
"To be."
You're violating the sanctity
of the church!
No, you are, rooinek,
with your damned
race-mixing ideas!
I'm Daniel Marais' daughter!
Leave us alone!
Sergeant, take the girl.
No! Stop!
Take your hands off me!
No! At least let the women go!
You want to be equal.
Why not the women as well?
No. Wait. We'll leave.
You shouldn't have come, boy.
Take your hands off me!
Let it be.
Maria's death shattered me
like nothing had before.
I no longer had the will
to resist.
I was defeated.
I had to tell Duma
I was leaving for Oxford.
Very, very good, children.
Now we shall do
the short vowels.
Demonstrate how
that verb works.
Now, give me an example
of the singular form
of the verb "to be."
I am.
That's correct.
Listen to this.
"We hold these truths
to be self-evident,
"that all men
are created equal,
"that they are endowed
by their creator
with certain..."
It works.
What did I tell you?
"That among these
are life, liberty,
and the pursuit of happiness."
Well done, Miriam.
A little work in Durban
and Pretoria and the cape.
We leave in the morning.
Gideon, no, no. I... I can't.
Rainmaker, what will it be,
Oxford or a good tomorrow?
Did Maria die for nothing?
Tell me.
What will it be?
Tell me.
I thought so.
They're coming for P.K.!
They're coming for P.K.!
P.K., they're coming for you!
They're coming for P.K.!
Come on.
P.K., they're coming for you!
Stay where you are!
You are under arrest
for violating the locations
regulations act!
This way!
This way!
This way!
Gideon, listen to me!
I won't let this happen.
They want me.
It's not about you.
It's about all of us.
Giving them what they want
won't make the struggle
any shorter.
Go! Go!
S where's the rooinek?
Where's the white boy?
Tell me! Where is he?
I don't know.
To your left!
Hurry, children! Hurry!
Hurry, children!
Have you seen P.K.?
No, no, I haven't.
Look, I must get
the children away.
Find him before they do.
Come, children, come.
Where's the white boy?
Tell me where he is!
You can't hide him!
We are the law.
You break the law,
you pay, Kaffir!
Where is the little bastard?
You want to learn English?
I'll teach you English.
This is a bullet.
The bullet goes in the gun.
It's over, Botha.
You've caught me.
Call them off. Take me in!
I'll take you in...
When I'm finished with him.
But you...
I'll take you in
when you're dead,
you Kaffir-loving shit!
Now, piss kop... Let's box, eh?
You ruin the country,
you bastard!
Get up!
You and that Maria bitch!
Come on.
Come on!
It's all right.
He... he's a very
nice cook, you know.
I remember
how my nanny would tell me
that if I listened to the wind,
I would hear the voices
of my life.
I listened and heard doc
talk about justice.
I heard geel Piet talk
about hope.
I heard Dabula Manzi,
the old medicine man,
talk about courage.
I heard Maria.
These are the voices
of my life,
the voices of Africa.
These are the voices
I'll carry with me
as Duma and I set out together
to help bring our country
closer to a good tomorrow.