Director: Clint Eastwood
Writers (WGA):Anthony Peckham (screenplay)
John Carlin (book)
Genre: Biography - Drama
Release Date:11 December 2009 (USA)

Tagline:His people needed a leader. He gave them a champion.

Plot: Nelson Mandela, in his first term as the South African President, initiates a unique venture to unite the apartheid-torn land: enlist the national rugby team on a mission to win the 1995 Rugby World Cup.

Invictus is an inspiring movie, especially at this time of year. Originally I had no intention of seeing the film because the trailers did not look that interesting and because I had no real idea of just who Mandela is. Of course I knew the basic outlines of his story - that he opposed apartheid, that he spent nearly three decades in a South African prison for his political agitation against the system of segregation, and of course that after his release from prison, he was elected president of South Africa.

What I was not aware of was the EXTENT to which he went out of his way not to take revenge against his former enemies, even in the face of the continued encouragement of his immediate staff to exact the revenge they wanted for their own past suffering under the apartheid regime.

Mandela's basic statement to his followers was - If I do as you ask, if I institute measures designed to bring physical and psychological hurt to the whites of South Africa, then I will be the very person that they are afraid that I will be, and our nation will never achieve unity. Now is the time to bring all South Africans, black and white , together. Now is the time to teach by example. Now is the time for forgiveness.

Throughout the film, Mandela repeats verses from the 19th cnetury poem, INVICTUS by William Ernest Henley which he read as a prisoner and which sustained him in his dark hours ....

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

The movie is played out against the backdrop of the South African Rugby team's fight to win the Rugby World Cup, showing the world that just as the players on a ball team must work and cooperate together to successfully win the game, so must the citizens of a nation cooperate and work together to successfully win the respect of the world.

I left the theater with a feeling of affection for the man and a wish to incorporate his vision into my own life.

Invicus the movie has much to teach us. I urge you to go and see it.

Oregon, OH - - December 15, 2009


 Morgan Freeman ...  Nelson Mandela
 Matt Damon ...  Francois Pienaar
 Tony Kgoroge ...  Jason Tshabalala
 Patrick Mofokeng ...  Linga Moonsamy
 Matt Stern ...  Hendrick Booyens
 Julian Lewis Jones ...  Etienne Feyder
 Adjoa Andoh ...  Brenda Mazibuko
 Marguerite Wheatley ...  Nerine
 Leleti Khumalo ...  Mary
 Patrick Lyster ...  Mr. Pienaar
 Penny Downie ...  Mrs. Pinnear
 Sibongile Nojila ...  Eunice
 Bonnie Henna ...  Zindzi
 Shakes Myeko ...  Minister of Sport
 Louis Minnaar ...  Springbok Coach
 Danny Keogh ...  Rugby President
 Dan Robbertse ...  Boer
 Robin Smith ...  Johan De Villiers
 David Dukas ...  Captain of 747
 Grant Swanby ...  Co-Captain of 747
 Josias Moleele ...  Face Painter
 Langley Kirkwood ...  Presidential Guard
 Robert Hobbs ...  Presidential Guard
 Melusi Yeni ...  Presidential Guard
 Vuyo Dabula ...  Presidential Guard
 Daniel Hadebe ...  Presidential Guard
 Jodi Botha ...  High School Boy
 Henie Bosman ...  High School Coach
 Refiloe Mpakanyane ...  Jessie
 Jakkie Groenewald ...  Johannesburg Cop
 Murray Todd ...  Johannesburg Cop
 Japan Mthembu ...  Local Cop
 Albert Maritz ...  Sprinbok Mranage
 Sello Motloung ...  Mandela's Doctor
 Meren Reddy ...  Minister of the Environment
 Lida Botha ...  Mrs. Brits
 Susan Danford ...  Mrs. Cole
 Sylvia Mngxekeza ...  Mrs. Dlamini
 James Lithgow ...  New Zealand PM
 Malusi Skenjana ...  NSC Firebird
 Bart Fouche ...  Prison Guard
 Johnny Cicco ...  Staff Member
 Wayne Harrison ...  Staff Member
 Ashley Taylor ...  Team Crew
 Gift Leotlela ...  Team Crew
 Kgosi Mongake ...  Sipho
 Given Stuurman ...  Township Kid
 Vuyolwethu Stevens ...  Township Kid
 Ayabulela Steven ...  Township Kid
 Nambitha Mpumlwana ...  Trophy Wife
 Andre Jacobs ...  T.V. Announcer
 Scott Eastwood ...  South African Springbok
 Grant Roberts ...  South African Springbok
 Mark Bown-Davies ...  South African Springbok
 Dale Stephen Dunn ...  South African Springbok
 Graham Lindemann ...  Kobus Wiese
 Andries Le Grange ...  South African Springbok
 Clive Richard Samuel ...  South African Springbok
 Richard Abrahamse ...  South African Springbok
 Sean Pypers ...  South African Springbok
 Riaan Wolmarans ...  South African Springbok
 Ryan Scott ...  South African Springbok
 Daniel Deon Wessels ...  South African Springbok
 Vaughn Thompson ...  South African Springbok
 Charl Engelbrecht ...  South African Springbok
 Rolf E. Fitschen ...  South African Springbok (as Rolf Ernst Fitschen)
 Andrew Nel ...  South African Springbok
 Rudi Zandberg ...  South African Springbok
 Abraham Vlok ...  South African Springbok
 Zak Feaunati ...  Jonah Lomu
 Sean Cameron Michael ...  Springbok Equipment Manager (uncredited)
 Patrick Walton Jr. ...  Springbok Trainer (uncredited)

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