7.4/10
132,612
265 user 311 critic

Invictus (2009)

Trailer
2:33 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
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.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (book)
Reviews
Popularity
3,580 ( 318)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 10 wins & 33 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Tony Kgoroge ...
Patrick Mofokeng ...
Matt Stern ...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Sibongile Nojila ...
...
Shakes Myeko ...
...
Springbok Coach (as Louis Minaar)
Edit

Storyline

The film tells the inspiring true story of how Nelson Mandela joined forces with the captain of South Africa's rugby team to help unite their country. Newly elected President Mandela knows his nation remains racially and economically divided in the wake of apartheid. Believing he can bring his people together through the universal language of sport, Mandela rallies South Africa's rugby team as they make their historic run to the 1995 Rugby World Cup Championship match. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

His people needed a leader. He gave them a champion. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Release Date:

11 December 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Human Factor  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

CAD 644,056 (Canada) (13 December 2009)

Gross:

$37,491,364 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Screenwriter Anthony Peckham is a native of South Africa, which gave him a special insight to the story's era. See more »

Goofs

At various points in the film, we see a hoarding saying "Welcome to Wales 1999" which is the location of the 1999 World Cup final. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
High School Boy: [seeing passing motorcade] Who is it, sir?
High School Coach: It's the terrorist Mandela, they let him out. Remember this day boys, this is the day our country went to the dogs.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the first part of the end credits, pictures are shown of the real life characters that were portrayed in the movie. Those images are then followed by a scene of South African kids playing rugby. See more »

Connections

Featured in Richard Roeper & the Movies: Invictus (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Invictus 9,000 Days
(2009)
Music by Clint Eastwood and Michael Stevens
Lyrics by Dina Eastwood and Emile Welman
Performed by Overtone and Yollandi Nortjie
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Just one great film
11 December 2009 | by (Sacramento, CA) – See all my reviews

People forget that Nelson Mandela came to power at a time when his country was bitterly divided. There was the bitter experience that white South Africans saw in their neighboring countries,i.e., Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe and other nations where the White colonialist had been replaced by Black African politicians and a stable government had been replaced by corrupt, self-serving regimes where those in power feathered their nests after seizing the assets of their former White citizens and placed all their friends in positions of authority with the result of the country going to the dogs. The scene where the Afrikaaner newspaper remarks, "Mendela can get elected but can he run a country," and the superb Morgan Freeman remarks to his bodyguard that the headline raises a good point.

In a sense, this film is about Mandela. The rugby team becomes a metaphor of what he faced when ascending to the presidency, a nation divided. Noting that the Black South Africans were cheering for the opposition in the face of the old Apartheid guard whose love of rugby unified them. It's easy to forget that there was a great division among White South Africans, i.e., the descendants of the Boers, Afrikaaners, and the rest. There was even a middle ground with the "Coloreds," Asian South Africans, being caught between these two worlds and there were bitter rivalries among the competing African political interest groups as well.

Mandela's focus on reviving the national rugby team and making it a symbol of a new united nation homes in on the role of Matt Damon, an Afrikaaner who's the captain of the team. Francois is the catalyst that makes this story work and Damon, the rugged Mick from Boston, does a fantastic job showing the transition from hopelessness to hope as many White South Africans felt at that time. The wonderful thing about this film is its touching on all the levels. It goes beyond being merely the story of a single man or group of men. Sure, we love a "feel good" movie and of course we love an "underdog can win" flick, but this film works works because its about people working together to rebuild something new for everybody.

The film reeks with great moments: Pienaar visiting the cell where Mandela spent more than 20 years of his life, thinking and planning; The New Zealand Rugby team doing their Maori threat dance before the match; the jet buzzing the field before the game-- and so on. See it. Enjoy it. And, don't forget, it's a bit of history. Romanticized? Somewhat. Mandela wasn't able to solve all of South Africa's big problems, but he did one bang-up job for the Springboks.


93 of 117 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page