Winnie Mandela


Winnie Mandela

Critics Consensus

Winnie Mandela takes few chances and delves only superficially into its subject's life, making it feel more like a too-earnest made-for-TV movie than a proper biopic.



Total Count: 37


Audience Score

User Ratings: 3,066
User image

Winnie Mandela Photos

Movie Info

Starring Academy Award (R) winner Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls) and Academy Award nominee Terrence Howard (Hustle & Flow), WINNIE MANDELA is an epic story of love, sacrifice and courage. Moving from a remote tribal village to the sprawling metropolis of Johannesburg, South Africa, a proud young Winnie (Jennifer Hudson) soon found love with a rising political star, Nelson Mandela (Terrence Howard). When Nelson was imprisoned for protesting the brutal Apartheid government, Winnie worked tirelessly to win his freedom and to carry on his message of peace and equality. Her struggle to keep the Mandela dream alive was rewarded by years of persecution and imprisonment, including 18 months of solitary confinement. Throughout, her resolve to fight for her freedom, her family and her country never wavered. Her leadership and unconquerable spirit caught the attention of the world and earned her the name "the mother of the nation. (c) RJ Entertainment

Watch it now


Jennifer Hudson
as Winnie Madikizela-Mandela
Terrence Howard
as Nelson Mandela
Elias Koteas
as DeVries
Wendy Crewson
as Mary Botha
Aubrey Poo
as Peter Magubane
Unathi Kapela
as Winnie (12 & 13)
Talitha Ndima
as Nancy (19, 20, 28 & 30)
Professor Mavuso
as Columbus Madikizela
Nomsa Xaba
as Makhulu
Bongi Mbongwe
as Gertrude
Tom Fairfoot
as BBC Reporter
Jonathan Rands
as Judge De Wet
Jennifer Rebelo
as School Inspector #1
Lionel Newton
as School Inspector #2
Hlomla Dandala
as Oliver Tambo
Jonathan Taylor
as Professor Phillips
Leleti Khumalo
as Adelaide Tambo
Yule Masiteng
as Nelson's Boxing Trainer
Pieter Brandt
as Justice de Wet
Carel Trichadt
as Justice de Wet
Carel Trichardt
as Justice de Wet
Ashley Taylor
as Maj Prinsloo
Neil Sandilands
as Dr. Hattingh
Antoinette Louw
as Mrs. Hattingh
Abel Ndebele
as Stompie
Damon Berry
as Rev. Verryn
Fezile Mpela
as Cyril Ramaposa
Deon Lotz
as F.W. DeKlerk
View All

News & Interviews for Winnie Mandela

Critic Reviews for Winnie Mandela

All Critics (37) | Top Critics (19)

  • This biopic is part hagiography, part expose, and gravely incoherent.

    Sep 13, 2013 | Rating: C- | Full Review…
  • In the end, hers is a journey as complicated and fascinating as that of South Africa itself.

    Sep 10, 2013 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • It would have benefited the film if Roodt had been as bold with the mechanics of his storytelling as he is with his inclusion of the title character's less savory moments. But its strengths, particularly the two lead performances, far outweigh its flaws.

    Sep 6, 2013 | Full Review…

    Alonso Duralde

    Top Critic
  • "Winnie Mandela'' really stumbles when it comes to depicting the couple's painful separation, which the film suggests resulted more from politics than Winnie's infidelity.

    Sep 6, 2013 | Full Review…
  • Despite the marquee names and their obvious talent, the film feels like a made-for-TV movie.

    Sep 5, 2013 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • Distant and obvious, it takes a story with many angles and reduces its edges, becoming a glorified TV movie.

    Sep 5, 2013 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Winnie Mandela

  • Aug 29, 2013
    This is a good biopic on Winnie Mandela, the wife of the late Nelson Mandela. The film takes a look at her life and how she met Nelson, but at the same time, it does leave a bit to be desired because I felt that the film could have been much better than what was delivered before a viewing audience. Winnie Mandela is a good film worth seeing, but you'll quickly realize that it does fall short of its potential at times. This is a retelling in a romanticized way of her life, and its accuracy can be called into question. However the performances are engaging and the cast is impressive, despite a few imperfections here and there. Terrence Howard is good in the role of Nelson Mandela; however he is not the best choice to play him. I found Morgan Freeman and Idris Elba to be far superior choices, and with that being said, Howard does what he can with the material, and he is pretty good, but he is far from memorable as well. The film works well and it does manage to be entertaining from start to finish, but it's obvious that the film's script has its limitations; therefore Winnie Mandela is an average biopic that never goes in depth into its subject, which is a shame because Winnie Mandela and her late husband are fascinating icons. The film is your typical hollywoodized version of facts, and though good, I wanted more actuality to the story. Nonetheless, Winnie Mandela is a good film, but one that should have been closer to the real life story because, let's face it, it's a fascinating story, one that deserves to be properly told. With that being said, the definitive film of Winnie Mandela's life has yet to be made, but for now, this is a good film to watch and get to k now the person who stood by Nelson Mandela while he was in prison.
    Alex r Super Reviewer

Winnie Mandela Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

News & Features