A Dry White Season
A Dry White Season (1989)

Schoolteacher Ben du Toit (Donald Sutherland) has been insulated all his life from the horrors of apartheid in his native South Africa. Perhaps he really didn't want to know. When the son of his black gardener is arrested and beaten as… More

Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: November 8, 2005
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Critic Score: 87% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

The relentless plot is effectively set up and expertly pursued, and Hugh Masekela makes some striking contributions to Dave Grusin's musical score.

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Damon Wise
Time Out

Whites debating racial injustice: fine for a book published in Afrikaans a decade ago, but a poor premise for a message movie.

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Brian Gibson
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

This adaptation has its flaws, but what lingers is insulated Ben's inaction so juxtaposed with the persecution of Jonathan and then his father. The white man's willful ignorance doesn't just sustain but perpetuates a systemic, brutal, savage racism.

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Sheila Benson
Los Angeles Times

It's filled with obvious, earnest performances--Marlon Brando's ironic and subtle one is the only exception--and unresonant writing.

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Janet Maslin
New York Times

Mr. Brando appears only briefly and is badly missed. His character takes the whole film a notch above where it might otherwise go.

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TV Guide's Movie Guide

A polemic against South African apartheid, this may not meet criteria for "great" filmmaking, but director Euzhan Palcy's film succeeds in being significant.

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Variety Staff

A wrenching picture about South Africa that makes no expedient compromises with feel-good entertainment values, A Dry White Season displays riveting performances and visceral style.

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Jeanne Cooper
Washington Post

"A Dry White Season" bursts through your door and beats you senseless; it seems perverse to question its technique and only days later can you question its logic.

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Anthony Quinn
Empire Magazine

A thumpingly didactic script, but Palcy has crafted a watchable - if not particularly important, given its competition - one.

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More reviews for A Dry White Season

Flixster Audience Score: 77% Flixster User Reviews
Mike T.
It's too bad that such a well-intentioned movie is so mediocre. Cliche-riddled, convoluted writing and often haphazard choices made by director Euzhan… More