“Duma” is the work of a magician, a director capable of joining visual poetry with matter of fact plausibility, someone adept at using the world of animals to give us moving insights into our own.
—Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
This timeless and enchanting tale of a boy and his pet cheetah set amidst magnificent landscapes in southern Africa is filmmaker Carroll Ballard’s exploration into the unbreakable bond between children and animals. Based on a true story, Duma tells about an orphaned cheetah cub rescued by Xan and his father and named “Duma” (Swahili for cheetah). Duma joins the family on its ranch and becomes a playful sibling with the understanding that one day he will have to return to his native habitat. When that day comes, hastened by tragedy involving Xan’s own parents, the two set off alone in a motorcycle⎯with Duma in the sidecar⎯on a long and perilous journey across the continent. Braving desert, wild animals and a shady human, they experience the adventure of their lives that doubles as a rite of passage. This endearing story of love, loss and transition features footage of the fastest animal on earth, as well as footage of the stunning surrounding scener. Directed by Carroll Ballard. Cinematography by Werner Maritz. Produced by Warner Brothers in association Gaylord Films, John Wells Productions and Pandora Pictures.