Synopsis: During a nightly Porsche ride with his doting rascal Xan, white South African farmer Peter finds and adopts an orphaned cheetah cub, dubbed Duma (just Swahili for cheetah). It becomes the boy's inseparable playmate, even taking it to bed. Peter made clear from the start that the cheetah should be returned to the wild before its full adulthood. But the father is stricken down with a disease just before the cheetah could be returned. Xan's mother sells the farm and moves in with a city aunt. The cheetah escapes, but finds Xan at school, where the new boy is bullied. He decides to run away to the mountains with Duma. On the way they face countless perils, which courage, Xan's intelligence and Duma's instinct overcome.
Director(s): Carroll Ballard
Production: Warner Bros. Pictures
  1 win.
Rotten Tomatoes:
100 min

Dad, back there. We hit it.

No, we didn't hit it. Come on.

- Where is he?

- Listen. Over there.

- See it?

- Come on. Come on.

- Over there, look.

- Yeah.

Go around behind.

- Got it!

- Xan! Xan! Here!

Here! Here!

Slow down, you!

All right, what's that?

How the devil did

you get out here, fella?

- He's shaking like a leaf. See that?

- Yep.

- You think he's lost, what?

- Yeah.

- Yeah?

- See his mom?



I think you're right, yeah.

Come here, you.

Here, take him. Take him.

Hey, you.

How's he doing? He's hungry, huh?

What on earth are you doing?

Watch and learn, my friend.

Ice cream goes in here.

Flower goes on top.

Baby bottle.



- He's a feisty guy.

- Yeah. And voil.

He's drinking.

- His face. Black streaks.

- Yeah.

- You know what that means.

- What?

A cheetah.

A cheetah. Yeah.

The world's fastest animal.

From zero to 60 in two seconds.

I bet it's faster than your Porsche.


You think we should hang on to him?


Why not?

Where else is he gonna go?


We can't keep him forever.

Not any more than your mom

and I can keep you.

He's gonna go back to the world

he came from one day.

Mom! Mom!

- Get it off! Get it off!

- Mom, hurry! It's got Dad!

- It's a monster! Come on! Come on!

- Save yourselves!

- God, it's ripping me apart!

- Xan?

Stop tearing at me,

you terrible animal. It's...

Oh, hello.


- Look what we found.

- And who's this?

That was a close one.

- Not nearly close enough.

- I was almost torn asunder.

- What is this?

- See what we found?

I'm glad I'm not his mum.

I'd be heartbroken to lose him.

Hey, sexy mama. Your place or mine?


- Dad?

- Xan.

Did I tell you about teaching

that bird questionable phrases?

What did I tell you, huh?

Wait. Wait!


Now go.

In Africa, they say that when

you give someone a name...

...they become your responsibility.

A proper name should capture

the most important qualities...

...and point them

towards a certain kind of life.

I tried different names for the cub...

...like Fuzzy, Spots or Speedy.

But nothing stuck.

As he became part of our daily lives...

...he got to know

everything around the farm.

And I think he started to feel

like it was his place too.

Then Mom thought of Duma,

the Swahili word for cheetah.

We all thought it sounded pretty good.

So then Duma became our responsibility.

- How fast does it go?

- Don't worry about how fast now.

Don't worry about how fast.

Just worry about how to start, all right?

- Yeah.

- A little petrol, just a little.

- Press this down.

- And what is that gear?

One down...

Yeah, one down, four up. All right?

Put your hand on it.

Let it go. Let it go.

Go ahead.

That's it. Feel that?

- Yep.

- You like that, right?

All right, hold on.

You want to go fast now? That's it.

Try one more time.

If you let it out too fast, look.

Here, you're popping it like that.

You don't want to do that.

- Tight.

- Pull it to that side.

Tight. Tight.

Pull on it. There you go.

Beauty. One more.

There you are.

One more, one more. Tight, tight.

All right.

Now, wait. Watch it, watch it.

Don't ever underestimate what you

can do with a bit of baling wire.

It's good, eh?

Come on. Hang on! You got it!

There he goes!



It seemed impossible that anything bad

could have happened to my dad.

Before he got sick...

...he never let anything stop him.

He was always looking

at the bright side.

Mom and I took care of the farm

while Dad was in hospital.

The doctor said

he recovered really well...

...and that everything

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"Duma" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 29 Mar. 2020. <https://www.scripts.com/script/duma_7349>.

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