Power Of One

( 17 )

Overview

John G. Avildsen, director of Rocky and The Karate Kid, adapts Bryce Courtenay's compassionate novel about the coming of age of a white anti-apartheid activist during the years of World War II in South Africa. Avildsen cumbersomely grafts Courtenay's tale of fighting apartheid onto a Hollywood-style fight-for-the-championship bout. Seven-year-old P.K. Guy Witcher is a white South African raised on his family's farm by his Zulu nanny. When his mother takes ill, he is sent away to an Afrikaner boarding school, ...
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Overview

John G. Avildsen, director of Rocky and The Karate Kid, adapts Bryce Courtenay's compassionate novel about the coming of age of a white anti-apartheid activist during the years of World War II in South Africa. Avildsen cumbersomely grafts Courtenay's tale of fighting apartheid onto a Hollywood-style fight-for-the-championship bout. Seven-year-old P.K. Guy Witcher is a white South African raised on his family's farm by his Zulu nanny. When his mother takes ill, he is sent away to an Afrikaner boarding school, where he is picked on and nearly killed by the school bully during a pep rally for Hitler. P.K. survives and is sent to live with his grandfather. He befriends Doc Armin Mueller-Stahl, a jailed German musician, and a black inmate Morgan Freeman, who teaches P.K. how to use his fists for some quick boxing moves. At 12, P.K. now played by Simon Fenton, witnesses black inmates being cruelly humiliated by their racist white jailers. Taking note of P.K.'s fluidity for languages, his black mentor spreads the word that P.K. is the incarnation of the mythic Rain Maker, a messianic liberator who is destined to unite all the African tribes. By the time he's 18 years old, P.K. now played by Stephen Dorff is becoming the Great White Hope for the black Africans, boxing his way into their hearts and minds. He joins up with an old boxing foe Alois Moyo, who is now a township activist, and takes up the apartheid struggle. But things get confusing when P.K. falls in love with the daughter Fay Masterson of an apartheid leader.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
The late '80s and early '90s saw numerous stories of Afrikaner atrocities hit the big screen -- so many, in fact, that it became a challenge to differentiate between them. With John G. Avildsen at the helm, The Power of One should be easy to remember as "the boxing one." Truth be told, though, pugilism is only a small part of this sprawling story of early apartheid, as the director of such crowd pleasers as Rocky and The Karate Kid evolves into an artist equal to the epic sweep of tragedy and history. Avildsen and screenwriter Robert Mark Kamen, his Karate Kid collaborator, send the viewer on the same journey of lost innocence the protagonist endures, following the young P.K. Guy Witcher from the point of his earliest childhood traumas, and making him easily relatable. Set against the African plains lushly shot by Dean Semler, this section establishes the tensions not only between Afrikaners and blacks, but Afrikaners and the English, which contextualize many of the events that follow. The young Witcher's narration hits a disarmingly matter-of-fact tone. The actors chosen to play P.K. at his next two ages can't quite match the child actor's presence, though Stephen Dorff, often cast as a rascal, is plenty charming here. With the help of some choice supporting performances Daniel Craig as a vicious Afrikaner officer, Morgan Freeman as a saintly prisoner, The Power of One tells a rousing story of struggles against injustice -- compromised only slightly by the fact that it's not based on actual events. It's got some decent boxing scenes as well, but they're secondary to the larger themes Avildsen brings to the screen in his most mature effort. Too bad he couldn't build on it -- he relapsed to a small-time bull-riding movie, 8 Seconds, as his next project.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/8/2012
  • UPC: 883316397299
  • Original Release: 1992
  • Rating:

  • Source: Warner Archives
  • Presentation: Pan & Scan
  • Language: English
  • Time: 2:07:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 3,197

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Stephen Dorff P.K. at age 18
Morgan Freeman Geel Piet
Armin Mueller-Stahl Doc
John Gielgud Headmaster St. John
Maria Marais Fay Masterson
Simon Fenton P.K. Age 12
Guy Witcher P.K. Age 7
Daniel Craig Sgt. Jaape Botha
Alois Moyo Gideon Duma
Ian Roberts Hoppie Gruenwald
Marius Weyers Professor Daniel Marais
Raymond Barreto Indian Referee
David Guwaza Student
Caro Jones
Banele Dala Moyo Boy Who Reads
Lungani Sibanda Student
Bart Van Niekerk Lieutenant Smit
Reverend Peter Van Vuuren Minister at Maria's Funeral
Nomadlozi Zubheka Nanny
Agatha Hurle Midwife
Nigel Ivy P.K. Newborn
Tracy Brooks Swope Mother
Brendan Deary P.K. Infant
Winston Mangwarara Tonderai Infant
Tonderai Masenda Tonderai
Cecil Zilla Mamanzi Ranch Foreman
John Turner Afrikaner Minister
Robbie Bulloch Jaapie Bother
Gordon Arnell Minister at Mother's Funeral
Jeremiah Mnisi Dabula Manzi
Paul Tingay Grandfather
Hywel Williams Captain
Michael Brunner Kommandant Van Zyl
Clive Russell Sgt. Bormann
Winston Ntshona Mlungisi
Ed Beeten Prison Commissioner
Dominic Walker Morrie Guilbert
Robert Reed School Fight Opponent
Fay Masterson Maria Marais
Roy Francis Referee
Clare Cobbold 1st Maria's Friend
Natalie Morse 2nd Maria's Friend
John Osborne Guard
Simon Shumba Man Without Pass
Stan Leih 1st Van Cop
Rod Campbell 2nd Van Cop
Adam Fogerty Andreas Malan
Tony Denham Boxing Partner
Eric Nobbs 1st City Cop
Edward Jordan 2nd City Cop
Brian O'Shaughnessy Colonel Bretyn
Faith Edwards Miriam Sisulu
Liz Ngwenya Nganga Ancient Woman
Andrew Whaley Ticket Taker
Dominic Makuwachuma Joshua
Joel Phiri Student
Peggy Moyo Student
David Khabo Student
Robin Annison Anita
Christien Anholt Date at Dinner
Nigel Pegram 1st Man Guest
Jon Cartwright Jacob
Marcia Coleman Woman Guest
Technical Credits
John G. Avildsen Director, Editor
David Barkham Production Designer
Karen Brookes Set Decoration/Design
Graham Burke Executive Producer
Roy Button Producer
Johnny Clegg Songwriter
Gregory Coote Executive Producer
Roger Hall Production Designer
Martin Hitchcock Art Director
Caro Jones Casting
Robert Mark Kamen Screenwriter
Arnon Milchan Producer
Kevin Phipps Art Director
Tom Rand Costumes/Costume Designer
Steven E. Reuther Executive Producer
Dean Semler Cinematographer
Les Tomkins Production Designer
Clive Winter Sound/Sound Designer
Hans Zimmer Score Composer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Power of One
1. Chapter 1 [10:00]
2. Chapter 2 [10:00]
3. Chapter 3 [10:00]
4. Chapter 4 [10:00]
5. Chapter 5 [10:00]
6. Chapter 6 [10:00]
7. Chapter 7 [7:11]
8. Chapter 8 [2:48]
9. Chapter 9 [10:00]
10. Chapter 10 [10:00]
11. Chapter 11 [10:00]
12. Chapter 12 [10:00]
13. Chapter 13 [10:00]
14. Chapter 14 [6:59]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- The Power of One
   Play
   Trailer
   Chapters
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 17 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(12)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(2)

Your Rating:

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Sort by: Showing all of 17 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 22, 2012

    Horrible Adaptation

    I have read the book The Power of One several times. It is one of my all-time favorite books. The characters and story are so well put together and the message is powerful. This movie does HORRIBLE justice to this moving and important story. While the acting is okay, the main part of Peekay's story is left out. There is so much richness that the filmmaker chose to omit. I was VERY disappointed with this film and would not recommend it at all. Please, please, PLEASE read the book - you will be so much better off!

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Like the title of one of Laurens Van Der Post books, this is "a story like the wind". It is a wonderful coming of age tale about a British boy in South Africa at the outbreak of World War II.

    If I list my favorite 10 films, this is number one. A wonderful story about a boy overcoming bullying and ethnic hatred with courageous action.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Have you ever wondered about the power of one? We all think..."what can I do? I'm only one person." BUT every journey begins with the first step...and all it really only takes is ONE person to get things going! This is a Compelling story!

    "The Power of One" is the story of Peekay, an "orphan" making his way in the Afrikaner world of South Africa. Through his experiences we learn of the hardships, challenges & prejudice facing everyone in the re-development of this nation. We watch Peekay grow from a young man, persecuted for being English, to a boxer who can hold his own. Morgan Freeman gives an unforgettable & moving portrait of a loving friend/mentor who teaches PK to box, to see past the anger & to look forward to life. Daniel Craig gives an intense performance as an Afrikaner who cannot overcome his prejudice. As we watch PK grow to manhood, we're aware of all the possibilities that can occur when one truly accepts their fate and moves to be heard. As Nietzsche says "Boldness has genius." The power of one is a major force to be reckoned with. If we are silent, we are nonexistent. Watch PK reinforce our belief that ONE person can make a difference. I guarantee that you will be moved and inspired by this beautiful movie. (the book is really good too!)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Power Of One

    Stephen Dorff...you are gorgeous....absolutley beautiful! i am a huge fan and i love you soooo much! you are amazing especially in this movie. Morgan Freeman is also amazing. I like him because his first name is my middle name and my last name is his last name:) this movie taught me to never lose hope and to follow your dreams. It was amazing and Stephen Dorff is a hotty....but only in this movie! I LOVE YOU SOOOOOO MUCH!! YOU ARE AMAZING!! i can't stop thinking about you!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Power Of One

    I am a HUGE fan of Stephen Dorff. My dream is to meet him one day and marry him that's how much his movie, The Power of One meant to me. The movie inspired me and made me realize to keep trying and believe in yours dreams, not to let ANYTHING get in your way. I <3 P.K. in the movie, (especially when he is Stephen Dorff) great job, you couldn't of made a better movie with a stronger message

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    An Inspiering Film

    The movie is a great movie for those who can relate to the themes of injustice, racism, friendship, and heroism. It is a very inspiaring film, which leaves u asking ur self can one person really make a difference??

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Enlightening

    This is the second year I have used the movie in my World History Class. It is powerful and very revealing. The students have a better understanding of South Africa during apartheid.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Excellent Movie!!!

    This is one of the best films of all time,and the soundtrack is out of this world.I mean the songs bring in great emotions to the film.Hats off to the actors,especially Morgan Freeman.....Good Job to you all and keep up the good work.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Powerful film to introduce S. Africa to students

    I have used this film several times to show my college students. They are largely ignorant of Africa in general, thinking that Africa is one country instead of a continent. (However, it is not just young peole who are appallingly ill-informed about Africa.) The Power of One does a good job of including all facets of South Africa during apartheid. The Afrikaaner, the British, and the black native perspective are all represented. I love the story, and while it contains a few cliches, it is definitely a powerful narrative for someone who knows nothing about S. Africa.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great

    The Power of One was a great movie and still is. Stephen Dorff and Morgan Freeman do an excellent job of portraying their characters. The soundtrack to it is just beautiful. Stephen Dorff your gorgeous and I love you. Keep up the good work!!!!!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Crappy Movie

    It was terrible...did you here me terrible...it was a big waste of time

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Excellent for school

    My students (in Argentina) loved it. Racism shown downright perfect. Lots of topics for discussion. Great images and music. Very advisable

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great Flick

    I couldnt believe how compelling the movie was, it shows a boy with no hope transforming into a man with everything going for him. A huge twist in the end.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Power Of One

    I loved this movie because it was very well done, and cause stephen dorff (at 18) is hot, and he's hot now too. But i loved him in that movie.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great movie!!

    This is a very compelling movie with a great cast. The balance of loss and hope in the story keeps you riveted. And several unexpected events in the movie make it more than just your standard-plot life-struggle movie. This ranks up there with Dead Poets Society as one of the best coming-of-age films ever made. And, if you can believe it, the blurb above has a mistake. The girl in the story is not the daughter of PK's childhood bully (the ages make that virtually impossible anyway). She is the daughter of a White Africaaner aristrocrat that supports apartheid. And he ultimately pays for his unjust beliefs.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 17 Customer Reviews