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Duma (2005)



Average Rating: 7.5/10
Reviews Counted: 60
Fresh: 56 | Rotten: 4

This is an old-fashioned, richly textured family film that will appeal to children and adults alike.


Average Rating: 7.5/10
Critic Reviews: 28
Fresh: 26 | Rotten: 2

This is an old-fashioned, richly textured family film that will appeal to children and adults alike.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 20,571


My Rating

Movie Info

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

May 16, 2006


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All Critics (65) | Top Critics (30) | Fresh (56) | Rotten (4) | DVD (5)

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.

February 8, 2008 Full Review Source: Denver Post
Denver Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

For those wishing they still made films like The Black Stallion, today is your lucky day.

March 31, 2006 Full Review Source: Dallas Morning News
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Visually panoramic, a film that revels in making the expanse of a beautiful place palpable.

March 30, 2006 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

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.

March 18, 2006 Full Review Source: Boston Globe
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

With ravenous alligators and lions on the prowl, Duma delivers familiar adventure, but Ballard refuses to cater to cuteness.

March 3, 2006 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

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.

March 3, 2006 Full Review Source: Detroit Free Press
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Enchanting coming-of-age story for kids.

December 18, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

A handcrafted masterpiece.

November 1, 2006
Christianity Today

It's as good as this sort of thing gets, and deserves to be seen in a proper auditorium rather than on DVD.

April 4, 2006 Full Review Source: One Guy's Opinion
One Guy's Opinion

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.

April 2, 2006 Full Review Source:

... a beautifully photographed journey that will thrill youngsters and strongly engage adults.

March 10, 2006 Full Review Source: Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

... leads us on a journey -- sometimes humorous, sometimes harrowing, always heartfelt -- that's well worth taking.

March 3, 2006 Full Review Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal
Las Vegas Review-Journal

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.

February 17, 2006 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Director Carroll Ballard ... not only captures stellar images of nature, but feels the call of the wild in his bones.

February 17, 2006
Salt Lake Tribune

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.

February 16, 2006 Full Review Source:

Exciting but never violent, deeply emotional but never saccharine, Duma is the sort of solid family film Hollywood is always being criticized for not making any more.

February 10, 2006 Full Review Source: Kansas City Star
Kansas City Star

An old-fashion adventure yarn [and] an absolutely delightful throwback!

January 8, 2006 Full Review Source: Internet Reviews
Internet Reviews

Grabs for the gut by stoking primal understandings about our loving but tragically distant relationship with the wild.

January 6, 2006
Groucho Reviews

Audience Reviews for Duma

This hugely emotional film is perfect. It has an absolutely beautiful atmosphere and is rich with beautiful scenery, cinematography and acting talents crossed with strong, heartwarming and absolutely cherishable emotional depth. It has some of the best child acting i've ever seen in the history of my time deeply involved in my interest of films and is a modern classic that flows smoothly with a perfect script variety of darkness, brightness, humour and scares. But most amazingly for a film of the newest generation, Duma has a classic feel to it and is not afraid to be to smart for its own good.
November 2, 2011
Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

it was ok not great but ok
November 17, 2008
Film Crazy

Super Reviewer

Why has no one seen this?
March 4, 2007

Super Reviewer

    1. Ripkuna: Mothers never stop loving their children.
    – Submitted by Ruth P (2 years ago)
    1. Xan: My father, he died recently. How can someone just disappear like that? Forever.
    – Submitted by Hannah E (3 years ago)
    1. Xan: Love doesn't stop when time passes, or you live in different places, or somebody's gone.
    2. Xan: That's how it was with me and Duma.
    – Submitted by Hannah E (3 years ago)
View all quotes (3)

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Foreign Titles

  • Duma - Mein Freund aus der Wildnis (DE)
  • Duma (2005) (CA)
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