Relentless Enemies

Synopsis: A documentary on a pride of lions and their buffalo prey trapped on an island in the Okavango delta.
Genre: Documentary
Actors: Jeremy Irons
90 min

There are predators

and there are prey.

And then, there are enemies.

From ancient times,

Africa has been the place

where huge cats ruled the flooded forests

and swamps of prehistory.

It was a violent time,

when the nightmare of massive predators

stalked the land and nothing was safe.

Well, those nightmares are back.

There is an unusual pride of lions

stalking these swamps.

Cats that live in water and hunt a single herd

of Cape buffalo.

Evolution favors predators

that can hunt a range of prey,

but these lions are defying that trend

by becoming specialists,

relentless hunters of this one prey.

The explosive sky spitting fire

from the heavens

is an unsettling prelude to the battle ahead.

When two old adversaries

come head to head,

the conflict is a war of wills.

The outcome will hang in the balance.

There is an island in Africa,

a place where the ghostly shapes

of over 1 ,000 buffalo

drift over the domain

of the resident pride of lions.

The Tsaro pride are buffalo hunters,

made up of nine lionesses of enormous bulk.

Thick necks and heavy chests define them,

features that serve them well

for this unique hunting.

Amongst them, a silver-eyed female,

possibly blinded in combat with the buffalo.

She carries her battle scars well

and leads many of the hunts.

The heaviest set is a skew-eared female.

And the twins.

Two identical lionesses that often give birth

to cubs at the same time

and always hunt together.

Then there is the large older female,

a good huntress,

but there is something different about her.

She sits off to the side,

watching the pride, always distant.

The skew-horned buffalo bull

is the herd's pathfinder,

and he has led it around

the Tsaro territory for years.

He is a survivor

and senses the trouble ahead.

There is a magical moment

in any hunt, each time,

just one first moment,

a time somewhere between the initial

stalking approach of individual lions

and the coordinated run-in of a unified pride.

At that moment, the decision is made,

"We will attack, and we will attack together."

There is no fight like the fight for survival

and for the life of your offspring.

But these lions will not accept failure.

A charging buffalo doesn't strike fear

in their hearts.

It spurs them into a deadly game

of attack and counterattack,

thrust and parry, a relentless duel.

This hunt is far from over.

Blood has been tasted,

and like some invisible thread,

it will lead them back

to the injured calf time and time again,

day after day after day.

For this is an island surrounded

by an intricate web of thick papyrus swamps

and deep water to the south and west.

The buffalo are unable

to cross the fast-flowing

and crocodile-infested rivers.

And to the north,

deep channels carved out by hippos

make it difficult for the herd

to swim to safety in that direction.

There is no escape for the buffalo.

When they do wade into the maze

of channels that ring fence Duba Island,

they get entangled, confused,

and ultimately are forced to return

to the waiting lions.

So, what to us may seem a watery paradise

is for the buffalo a deadly confinement,

shrinking during the seasonal floods

before drying out to a faded savanna,

where two great warriors rule,

the males of the Tsaro pride.

They are masters of all on this island,

in particular the buffalo,

they and their Tsaro females

seldom let out of their sight.

There is a significant

new addition to the pride.

Growing up against this backdrop of buffalo,

he needs to be nimble

and confident on his feet

to become a Tsaro lion,

a specialist buffalo hunter.

Because lions are cooperative killers,

he must also learn

how to be part of the pride

and obey the harsh rules that govern it.

He has a brief window,

while under his mother's intense protection,

to memorize the personality

of each pride member.

The lone female is his first study.

The mother's explosive defense

only increases the tension in the pride

and sets in motion a further

and ominous isolation of the old female.

As a Tsaro lion,

his world is now a world of buffalo.

Slowly, the clicking horns

and occasional bellows

will become as common to his ears

as the sound of flood waters

rippling on the sand.

Each day brings him closer to the time

when he'll be ready to propel himself

into the midst of the herd,

unflinchingly throwing himself,

just like his mother does,

against the terrifying wall of horns.

The buffalo must walk their own

knife-edged path of survival,

finding food and water

while all the time avoiding the dangers

that will leave their bones scattered

in the indignity of death.

The buffalo are crossing back

into his mother's territory.

She has anticipated the path

of the herd's return perfectly.

The technique, flush the herd

and scan for the weak.

This time she is alone.

But she knows the gifts

of this summer season,

the newborn calves.

Buffalo's senses, both of sight and smell,

are well developed.

Their hearing is excellent.

These are intense and alert animals,

but a sixth sense creeps through her now.

She knows there is a lion nearby

and she knows it is coming for her calf.

All cats have an instinctive fear of water.

But when the mother leads

her day-old calf into the swamp,

the Tsaro lioness doesn't hesitate to follow.

There is iron-fisted determination

in a female with a hunger and a cub to feed.

Rate this script:0.0 / 0 votes

Dereck Joubert

All Dereck Joubert scripts | Dereck Joubert Scripts

0 fans

Submitted on August 05, 2018

Discuss this script with the community:



    Translate and read this script in other languages:

    Select another language:

    • - Select -
    • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
    • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
    • Español (Spanish)
    • Esperanto (Esperanto)
    • 日本語 (Japanese)
    • Português (Portuguese)
    • Deutsch (German)
    • العربية (Arabic)
    • Français (French)
    • Русский (Russian)
    • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
    • 한국어 (Korean)
    • עברית (Hebrew)
    • Gaeilge (Irish)
    • Українська (Ukrainian)
    • اردو (Urdu)
    • Magyar (Hungarian)
    • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
    • Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Italiano (Italian)
    • தமிழ் (Tamil)
    • Türkçe (Turkish)
    • తెలుగు (Telugu)
    • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
    • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
    • Čeština (Czech)
    • Polski (Polish)
    • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Românește (Romanian)
    • Nederlands (Dutch)
    • Ελληνικά (Greek)
    • Latinum (Latin)
    • Svenska (Swedish)
    • Dansk (Danish)
    • Suomi (Finnish)
    • فارسی (Persian)
    • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
    • հայերեն (Armenian)
    • Norsk (Norwegian)
    • English (English)


    Use the citation below to add this screenplay to your bibliography:


    "Relentless Enemies" STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 26 May 2024. <>.

    We need you!

    Help us build the largest writers community and scripts collection on the web!


    The Studio:

    ScreenWriting Tool

    Write your screenplay and focus on the story with many helpful features.