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When 10-old Xan and his father Peter come across an orphaned cheetah cub, they name their new friend "Duma," the Swahili name for cheetah, and he quickly becomes a member of the family. But, when Duma is almost fully grown, to Xan's dismay, his father tells him that it's time to take his friend to his real home before he grows too old to survive in his native habitat. Xan reluctantly agrees, but their plans must be put on hold when his father suddenly falls ill and Xan and his mother must move to Johannesburg. When Duma escapes and pays a disastrous visit to Xan's school,… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 93%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"It's a crime what happened to the wonderful African wilderness movie Duma in 2005. Beautifully directed by veteran Carroll Ballard, Duma fell flat in the United States because of bad timing and abysmal marketing."
‑ Michael Booth, Denver Post
"Too suspenseful for the youngest children, but for anyone older than 8 or 9, it evokes nothing less than awe at the harsh beauty of the natural world."
‑ Ty Burr, Boston Globe
"Enchanting coming-of-age story for kids."
‑ Heather Boerner, Common Sense Media
"The film opens with some adorable cheetah cubs, so you're instantly hooked, but there's more to this than just a bunch of cute animals."
‑ Cherryl Dawson and Leigh Ann Palone, TheMovieChicks.com
"Director Carroll Ballard makes only one type of movie -- family adventures that feature some sort of wildlife. To his credit, however, he does them pretty well."
‑ Jeff Vice, Deseret News, Salt Lake City
"For those wishing they still made films like The Black Stallion, today is your lucky day."
‑ Nancy Churnin, Dallas Morning News
"With ravenous alligators and lions on the prowl, Duma delivers familiar adventure, but Ballard refuses to cater to cuteness."
‑ Jeff Shannon, Seattle Times
"A handcrafted masterpiece."
‑ Mary Lasse, Christianity Today
"... a beautifully photographed journey that will thrill youngsters and strongly engage adults."
‑ Jack Garner, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
"Director Carroll Ballard ... not only captures stellar images of nature, but feels the call of the wild in his bones."
‑ Sean Means, Salt Lake Tribune
"Visually panoramic, a film that revels in making the expanse of a beautiful place palpable."
‑ Philip Kennicott, Washington Post
"Like its title character, Duma has been left to fend for itself by Warner Bros., which is barely releasing it. A successful showing this weekend will prove that there really is an audience for this brand of thoughtful, literate family film."
‑ John Monaghan, Detroit Free Press
"It's as good as this sort of thing gets, and deserves to be seen in a proper auditorium rather than on DVD."
‑ Frank Swietek, One Guy's Opinion
"... leads us on a journey -- sometimes humorous, sometimes harrowing, always heartfelt -- that's well worth taking."
‑ Carol Cling, Las Vegas Review-Journal
"Chances are excellent that Carroll Ballard's latest film 'Duma' isn't playing in a theater anywhere near you. That's a shame. It's one of those rare children's films that actually succeeds in delighting tots and their parents."
‑ Dan Lybarger, eFilmCritic.com
More reviews for Duma on Rotten Tomatoes