White Material

Synopsis: Denis revisits Africa, this time exploring a place rife with civil and racial conflict. A white French family outlawed in its home and attempting to save its coffee plantation connects with a black hero also embroiled in the tumult. All try to survive as their world rapidly crumbles around them
Genre: Drama
Director(s): Claire Denis
Production: IFC Films
  1 win & 10 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
106 min

It's the Boxer.

He's dead alright.

Pull over!

- Can I get in?

- No.

- No room?

- All full.

Climb up here.

I'll stay here, thanks.



- Where are you going?

- Home.

Where is your home?

The coffee plantation further down,

that way.

There used to be a roadblock here.

Did you ever pay them?

Yes, I think I did once.

- How much?

- I can't remember... 1 00 dollars.

To those thugs?

No wonder they act above the law!

I had to get through. Everyone pays.

That's what breeds corruption.

Because of people like you,

this country is filthy.

Can I sit down, sir?

To those ensconced

deep in the forest:

Wake up.

Leave your hideouts.

Herbs that tone your muscles...

and render you


and invulnerable.

Madame Vial!

This is your last warning!

You have to leave immediately!

Madame Vial!

The French army is pulling out!

We're leaving!

You'll be totally cut off!

Think it over, Madame Vial!

Think of your family!

We're pulling out!

You must leave immediately!


These whites, these dirty whites.

They scorn us.

We risk our lives for them!

They're a bunch of upstarts!

Pretentious, arrogant, ignorant.

They don't deserve

this beautiful land.

They can't even appreciate it!


What are you doing?

Where are you going?

- Where are you going?

- No way to stay.

You can't leave. We just started!

Let's go back.

You know it too! You can't stay.

You heard it from above.

Just listen!

I just need one week.

Five days or the crop will be ruined.

Five days is nothing.

Things have been bad for months!

Your foremen...

They're also leaving.

Ange and Maurice? I doubt it.

They are! And so are we!

This is getting bad.

Let's go!

Before trouble catches up with us!

Hold on!

Stay here. Why are you leaving?

Suffering and war everywhere!

- One week! Just one week!

- No.


You can't go, Maurice.

What will we do?

We need a week. You saw the crops.

One week at the most!

One short week.

All of a sudden you can't stay?

It's too dangerous?

It may be less dangerous...

In fact.

We don't have to be terrorized.

We can fight back.

That copter didn't come for fun.

It came for you and your family.

Not for us!

Andr is right.

Coffee's coffee.

Not worth dying for.

Where are your kids?

Out of harm's way.

Out of harm's way! Open your eyes!

You have a son.

Get him out of bed!

Let him go pick!

You have no right to criticize Manuel!

Get lost! Never come back again!

Never! You hear me, Maurice?



Andr isn't here.

Andr, Andr...

I knew it.

They can't take you down.

Not you, not the Boxer!

I used to say...

if ever I could meet the Boxer

and fight for him...

I'd ask God for nothing else.

Where is it from?

- Where?

- The plantation down there.

It's just white material.

Get up, Manuel, please. I need you.

Who's there?

What are you doing here?

Waiting for my uncle.

- Are you Jean-Marie's nephew?

- Yes.

Does he know you're here?

He'll be glad to see me.

Are you thirsty?

You want something to eat?


- Where are you going?

- To pick up Jos.

I'll go. I need to hire workers.

I'll get Jos after.

- You don't get it!

- You let them scare you!

- You take it.

- This is ridiculous.

Who opened the safe?

Why do you ask?

Look, it's a mess inside.

Ask Andr instead.

I don't have the keys.

Okay, man!


Just for the village.

It'll be 1 00 dollars.

You're my son's gym teacher.

I'm Maria Vial.

Never saw you. It's 1 00.

Whether you go or not.

Cut it out. It's 1 0 if I go,

zero if I don't.

You know who I am.

I know all of you.

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Claire Denis

Claire Denis (French: [dəni]; born 21 April 1946) is a French film director and writer. Her film Beau Travail (1999) is considered a modern cinematic masterpiece and one of the greatest films in the history of cinema. Other acclaimed works include The Intruder (2004), 35 Shots of Rum (2008), and White Material (2009). Her work has dealt with themes of colonial and post-colonial West Africa, as well as issues in modern France, and continues to influence European cinematic identity. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "White Material" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 3 Mar. 2021. <https://www.scripts.com/script/white_material_23392>.

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