Yesterday (2004) Movie Script

- Mamma?
- Yes, my child?
Why am I not a bird?
- A bird?
- Yes, a bird.
What do you mean, my daughter?
Why can't I fly like a bird?
Because you are not a bird.
Because you are you.
What if I was a bird?
You're not a bird.
But if I was a bird...
if you were a bird, we could fly...
and be there quickly
and not have to walk so far.
Well, you are not a bird, my daughter.
Yes. But why?
Beauty, you ask too many questions.
- How are you?
- I'm fine.
We are looking for the village of Rooihoek.
I am from that village. It's that way.
How far is it?
Not too far. But not close, either.
We have been traveling for about two hours.
- Two hours?
- Yes.
Is there a school there?
A school?
We are teachers.
In search of a school where we can teach.
We have been looking for a long time.
How long?
Two years. And a bit.
Two years? That is a long time.
Do they need teachers in your village?
I don't know. You shall have to ask.
Thank you.
If it is as far as you say,
then we best be going.
Go well.
- Is this the queue to see the doctor?
- Yes.
Thank you.
Where are you from?
- Rooihoek.
- Rooihoek?
That is far.
Yes, it is far.
Have you been waiting long?
Since 7:00 this morning.
- So early?
- Yes.
But there are still so many to go.
Yes. It is better to come early.
Will the doctor see us today?
The doctor will only be able to see people...
up to here.
The rest of you will have to go home...
and come back next week.
I told you. It is best to come early.
Before the sun.
You see...
we've waited a long time.
We've been here for so long.
Mamma, when is Daddy
coming home again?
Only next month, my child, on the 25th.
- Is that a lot of days?
- Yes, that's a lot of days.
Do you think he will buy a motor car?
- A motor car?
- Yes, a motor car.
Motor cars cost a lot of money.
How much is a motor car?
A lot.
How much is a lot?
A lot lot.
Anyway, I thought you wanted to be a bird?
I know, but a motor car would be fine.
Have you heard? Kunene's widow
got four numbers in the lotto.
- Four?
- Yes.
She paid a visit to the sangoma
who told her to play number seven.
She did and it worked.
It was one of the four numbers.
How much did she win?
One hundred and twenty rands.
Is that all?
I thought you won a lot of money
if you got four numbers.
It has to be all six.
She only got four.
How much do you get for six numbers?
A million rand!
Sometimes two million.
- A million rand?
- Yes.
For six numbers?
Imagine, such a lot of money.
What would you do if you won a million?
I don't play.
Yes, but if you did?
I don't know.
Turn Beauty into a bird.
What do you mean?
Nothing. Goodbye.
What did the doctor say?
I did not see him.
But you went to the clinic?
Yes, but it was full.
I have to go back next Tuesday.
Perhaps you will be feeling better by then.
Have you heard about Kunene's widow?
Four numbers! I've heard.
- Mamma?
- Yes, my child?
Where does the river go?
What do you mean?
Where does it start and where does it end?
It starts in the mountains...
and ends in the sea. I think.
In the sea! It goes all the way to the sea?
I think so.
How does the river flow...
between here and the sea?
Does it go up the mountain?
No. Water can't go up a mountain.
Only down.
So it won't reach the sea?
Not if there is a mountain in the way.
Then it won't reach the sea.
Now enough of all these questions!
There is still a lot to wash.
Pass me the board.
Be careful.
Don't look so frightened, my child.
It is only a cough.
We need to start planting before it gets dark.
Get the seeds quickly.
Mamma. I am hungry.
I'm hungry.
Should I peel an orange for you?
Here you go.
Thank you.
The doctor can only see up to here.
The rest of you, go home.
Please. I'm from Rooihoek.
I have to see the doctor today.
I'm sorry, but she can only see up to here.
You will have to come back next week.
But I am sick.
I am sorry. There is nothing I can do.
Come back next week.
Hello again.
Hello. Where is your friend?
She's lucky.
They needed a teacher in your village.
- You are from Rooihoek, aren't you?
- Yes.
- What about you?
- I was not so lucky.
What will you do?
Keep looking until I find some luck, too.
I hope you find it soon.
Look after my friend. She is a good woman.
And a good teacher, too.
Are you all right?
I am fine.
Are you sure?
I'm sure. I'm trying to see the doctor.
I am fine.
- Go well then.
- Go well!
This is the only pump in the village,
but the water is good.
Also, if anything's happening
in the village...
this is where you can find out about it first.
The Chief will never allow it.
You know what happened the last time
one of our men married...
a girl from the Misamangu clan.
There was a war for three years.
Well, the white flag is flying high...
and proud above his hut.
And proud above his hut.
He must like his new wife very much.
I have never seen a flag so high.
Not only a white flag, I hear.
A red one, too.
He's a cheeky boy, that one.
It's not enough that he's causing problems
by wanting...
to get married
to one of Misamangu's daughters...
but he's already advertising
for another wife.
He must have a spear between his legs.
I don't like it. Trouble is all I see.
What do you say, Yesterday?
If they are in love, they are in love.
There's nothing much
anyone can do about it.
Look here.
It's true, he likes the ladies
too much, that one.
Thank you for walking with me.
We can go together again tomorrow.
I fetch water every day.
- I'll see you tomorrow then.
- Thank you.
She's playing down in the field.
Thank you.
Mamma, wake up!
Mamma, wake up!
Mamma, wake up!
Somebody please help me!
Tell me...
how long have you had
this falling sickness?
This is the first time.
The first time?
I have been trying to see the doctor.
I have not been well these past few weeks.
The doctor?
At the clinic in Kromdraai.
Why did you not come and see me?
And what did the doctor say?
I have not seen him yet.
Not seen him?
It is difficult.
There are always so many people.
And still you did not come to see me?
No matter. I'll examine you.
If you do not trust me,
you should not have come.
You should have waited until the day,
whenever that day arrives...
that the doctors at the clinic
decide to see you.
Do you understand?
Now blow three times.
There is too much anger.
You must let go of the anger.
I am not angry.
You are. I can feel it.
Here, here and here.
You carry it on your shoulders.
I am not angry.
I cannot help you...
if you do not let the anger out of your body.
But I am not angry.
You see how it makes you sick?
What do I have to be angry about?
Why do you ask me this?
I am not angry.
I can treat you...
but if you do not let this anger go,
then it may not work.
- Do you understand?
- Yes.
I heard what happened.
I heard you collapsed.
I came to see
if there's anything I can do for you.
You are very kind. But I am fine.
- Would you like tea?
- If it is no trouble.
No trouble at all.
I have no sugar.
That's fine. I like it bitter.
What did the Sangoma say?
- Did she help you?
- I don't know.
Perhaps you are a diabetic?
A what?
It's to do with your sugar levels.
Maybe they are too low?
Sugar levels?
Some people, if their sugar levels
are too low, they collapse.
I would not know.
You are the teacher, not me.
You should see a doctor.
I am trying. I am trying.
But it is far to the clinic
and I always get there too late.
We shall have to arrange something.
You could take the taxi.
That is a waste of money.
But it is only five rand.
A waste of money. It is better to walk.
- Good morning.
- What is going on?
- It's Tuesday.
- So?
So the taxi is ready to take you
to the clinic in Kromdraai.
Don't worry, it is already paid for.
Hurry up and get dressed.
You will be the first one there.
I must wake up Beauty first and...
Get dressed. I'll look after her.
Thank you.
I cannot wait.
Who knows how long you will be?
I understand. Thank you, again.
Yesterday, is it?
Yes, madam.
I've had a Tomorrow and a Today even.
But never a Yesterday.
Who named you that?
My father, madam.
He said that things were better yesterday
than they are today.
But that was a long time ago.
You don't have to call me madam.
I am a doctor.
Yes, madam.
How long have you had this cough?
Since before Christmas, madam.
Before Christmas?
Why have you left it so long?
I thought it would go away.
And when it didn't, it was hard to see you.
I know. I am sorry.
We need more than one doctor at this clinic.
But there is not enough money.
Take a deep breath.
Like this.
Is there something wrong with me, madam?
I would like to do a blood test.
A blood test?
I need to draw some blood...
and send it for testing.
I don't understand.
Just to check that everything is fine.
But first, you have to sign your consent.
I need your consent.
Just read it through and sign it.
Here. Put your name here.
What's the matter?
I cannot read or write, madam.
It doesn't matter.
Do you want the test?
Will it hurt?
Don't worry.
Just a tiny little prick and it'll be all over.
Just relax. Look the other way.
How are you?
Fine. Fine.
- How are you, my child?
- I'm fine.
Does Teacher know where you are?
She was busy with lots of papers.
You must go and tell her I am here. Hurry.
What are you doing?
- What are you doing?
- Nothing, my child.
Here, go and throw this away for me.
Did you hurt yourself?
Run along.
- What's this for?
- The taxi.
Don't be silly. It was my pleasure.
But you don't have to pay for me.
I told you, it's my pleasure.
I'll make it up to you.
You already have.
- I have?
- By being my friend.
- It is not easy to make friends in this village.
- That is true.
When I married my husband...
it took at least a year
before they accepted me.
For some reason they are very suspicious
of outsiders in this village.
- Where is your husband?
- He works in Johannesburg.
How often do you see him?
Sometimes once a month.
Sometimes not for many months.
- It is hard.
- Yes. It is hard.
So, what did the doctor say?
She took my blood.
- She? It was a woman doctor?
- Yes. A white woman doctor.
She speaks like a proper Zulu, too.
- A proper Zulu?
- Like you and me.
What did she take blood for?
I do not know.
I have to go back next Tuesday.
Tell me when,
and I shall look after Beauty again.
- Thank you.
- Not at all.
She is a bright child, that one.
She should start school soon.
Next year.
I look forward to teaching her.
I do not understand.
Do you use a condom?
- What?
- Condoms, do you use them?
What for?
I am a married woman.
Why would I want to use those?
So, you only have sex with your husband?
And does he have other wives?
I am his only wife.
And where is he, your husband?
He works in Johannesburg.
Under the ground.
- Under the ground?
- In the mines.
When last did you see him?
On New Year's Day. Then he had to go back.
I see.
And do you enjoy...
a normal, healthy sex life?
Do you have sex?
You know what men are like
after they have been away for a long time.
I know.
It is important that I test him
as soon as possible.
Test him? But he's in Johannesburg.
- Which mine?
- I don't know.
- Can you find out?
- I will try.
It is important.
So now...
Am I going to stop living?
Hello, can you hear me?
What a surprise!
I hope you don't mind me coming here.
Of course not! I was just about to leave.
I need to ask you something.
Come. You walk me home.
Can I help you with that?
You are so kind.
But I need to ask another favor.
You only have to ask.
I need to go away for a few days.
Go away?
- To Johannesburg.
- What for?
I cannot say. I need someone
to look after Beauty while I am away.
Is there something wrong?
No problem.
Like I said, I think your daughter
is a wonderful child.
It will be my pleasure.
Thank you very much. Thank you.
Be good, my child.
- When are you coming back?
- I'll only be gone a day or two.
- You promise?
- I promise.
Come here.
Be a good girl, okay?
Your mommy will be back
before you know it.
Come, let us go and bake some bread.
I'm looking for my husband, John Khumalo.
- He works here?
- Yes.
Which section?
On top or under the ground?
Underneath. I need to see him.
What's it about?
I cannot say. I need to see him urgently.
- John Khumalo, you say?
- Yes.
- And you are?
- His wife, Yesterday.
- Yesterday?
- Yes.
Wait here and I shall find out for you.
Thank you.
What do you want?
- Has something happened to Beauty?
- No, she is fine.
- If it's money...
- It's not money.
It's you I've come to see.
- Me?
- Yes.
Why do you want to see me?
Go back to sleep.
I don't want to.
It's okay, your father will be here,
when you wake up.
Open it.
Do you like it?
This is the best gift you've ever given me.
- It's hard to turn.
- Let me try.
There we are!
Thank you.
You don't look well.
I'm fine. Just a little tired.
Are you still getting your medicine
from the clinic?
Well, it doesn't seem to be working.
Perhaps, you should go back
to the sangoma instead?
I'm just tired. That's all.
If you say so.
Thank you.
Let me help you.
Thank you.
In the men's hostel...
I used to run to the toilet all the time.
Every five minutes.
But there are no toilets...
under the ground.
Not where I work...
blasting the rock...
going deeper into the earth.
What else could I do?
I messed in my pants, over and over...
until they were wet and sticking to my legs.
I stank like an animal.
No one would come near me.
I did not want to believe what you told me.
I did not.
it kept playing over and over in my mind.
Over and over, driving me crazy.
And the shitting would not stop.
Until my shift boss had had enough
and made me go to the doctor.
The doctor...
did tests.
And he said just like you said.
I hear your husband is back.
I hear he is sick.
What's the matter with him?
Tell me, when is he going back to work?
Why doesn't he come out of the house?
No one has seen him for days.
I hear things are not so good.
I must say, Yesterday,
you're doing very well.
Very well?
Your body is strong.
It is keeping the disease in check.
It is not my body.
It is here.
I have made up my mind.
How so?
Until my child goes to school...
I'll not die.
Your child?
Yes. My daughter, Beauty...
starts school next year.
I can't wait for that day.
Only then can this "thing" take me away.
No. I will not die till that day.
But my husband...
he is in great pain.
Is there nothing you can do for him?
Is there no medicine that you can give him?
I'll see what I've got.
- I am sorry.
- For what?
Forget all of that.
That is all in the past.
You need to rest.
Rest now.
- May I come in?
- Of course, come in.
- I am not disturbing you?
- I am making dinner.
Who is it?
No one.
There is an urgent matter I need to discuss.
What is it?
- May we speak outside?
- Yes.
I wish the summer would hurry up.
I thought you should know
that everyone in the village is talking.
- Talking? About what?
- About your husband.
What are they saying about him?
They say...
he has the virus.
- Is it true?
- It is true.
- I have it, too.
- You?
But why did you not say anything?
You heard what happened
to that woman in Bergville?
There was this young woman. Very clever.
So much so that her whole village
helped save money...
to send her to university in Johannesburg.
She went there.
She was going to be a somebody.
But, she got AIDS.
And when she came home
to tell her mother and father...
everyone found out.
You know what happened?
They killed her.
Killed her?
They threw stones at her until she was dead.
Oh, my God.
- Is this true?
- It is true.
How long have you known?
Since the summer.
Since the summer?
What are you going to do?
He should not be able to stay here!
He will make us all sick.
No, no. He cannot make you sick.
That is not how it works.
- How, then?
- It is transmitted through blood.
Blood? What do you mean blood?
It lives in the blood...
and you can only get it
if it is transmitted into your blood.
"Transmitted"? What does "transmitted"
mean? You are confusing me now.
Passed into your blood.
By transfusion or sex.
Which is why he must go.
What if he bleeds all over us?
Hey, come on now! Be reasonable.
How is that going to happen?
Be reasonable? Hey, listen here!
My daughter was playing there
the other day and she saw him.
She says that he is so thin
that the wind could blow him over.
What is so funny?
There is nothing to laugh about.
I will not let my daughter play there again.
Me, neither. He must go.
Your husbands are bringing it to you.
Yes, we get it from them.
You must see how she coughs. There she is.
As you can see,
we are already overcrowded.
There is no place for your husband.
He will have to go on the waiting list.
I'd like to help you, but it's out of my hands.
What about the one over there?
That bed is empty now.
That bed will be filled by tonight.
There is a waiting list...
as long as my arm. Both arms.
You do not understand.
My husband is very sick.
The people in the village are angry.
They want him gone.
Come. We shall put his name
on the waiting list.
What's going on? Just leave us alone!
Tell me, is this what causes your anger?
I am not angry.
Let's go.
Stop that!
Sorry, Mamma.
Mamma, people are coming.
- What are you doing?
- I am trying to get this bonnet off.
- What for?
- I need it.
- Would you like us to help you?
- That would make me very happy!
Come, let's help her.
- They say you are building a hut?
- That's right, I am.
- What are you building it for?
- My husband.
Your husband?
The hospital is full,
so I have to build my own hospital.
- Your own hospital?
- It's what they want, isn't it?
I shall move him and look after him there.
- But...
- But what?
They don't want him in the village.
No matter how long it takes, I shall do this.
You are very brave!
I am not brave.
It is just the way things are.
We're almost done.
I need to rest.
- How can this be?
- What?
Your daddy...
used to play in this field
when he was your age.
Used to run free...
as a leopard...
But now, I can't even walk...
half a kilometer.
It is not far to go now.
It is too far.
No, it's Yesterday.
I have seen you come here every day,
since the winter.
I never knew your husband.
He was a very good man.
He did his best for us.
I could ask for no more, really.
School starts next week.
I know.
Is Beauty excited?
Yes. Me, too.
You are?
I never went to school.
I see.
I just want you to know...
when the end comes...
I shall love your daughter
as if she were my own.
Thank you.
Come and see what I brought you.
Yes, Mamma.
Come, sit next to me.
Open it and see.
Mamma, it's beautiful!
- Do you like it?
- Yes!
Do you like it a lot?
It's going to look nice on me.
Yes, it's going to look lovely.