The Power of One

March 27th, 1992


The Power of One

No valid json found


The Power of One is an intriguing story of a young English boy named Peekay and his passion for changing the world...

Release Year: 1992

Rating: 6.8/10 (4,965 voted)

Director: John G. Avildsen

Stars: Stephen Dorff, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Morgan Freeman

The Power of One is an intriguing story of a young English boy named Peekay and his passion for changing the world. Growing up he suffered as the only English boy in an Afrikaans school. Soon orphaned, he was placed in the care of a German national named Professor von Vollensteen (a.k.a. "Doc"), a friend of his grandfather. Doc develops Peekay's piano talent and Peekay becomes "assistant gardener" in Doc's cactus garden. It is not long after WWII begins that Doc is placed in prison for failure to register with the English government as a foreigner. Peekay makes frequent visits and meets Geel Piet, an inmate, who teaches him to box. Geel Piet spreads the myth of the Rainmaker, the one who brings peace to all of the tribes. Peekay is cast in the light of this myth. After the war Peekay attends an English private school where he continues to box. He meets a young girl...

Writers: Bryce Courtenay, Robert Mark Kamen

Nomadlozi Kubheka - Nanny
Agatha Hurle - Midwife
Nigel Ivy - P.K. Newborn
Tracy Brooks Swope - Mother
Brendan Deary - P.K. Infant
Winston Mangwarara - Tonderai Infant
Guy Witcher - P.K. Age 7
Tonderai Masenda - Tonderai
Cecil Zilla Mamanzi - Ranch Foreman
John Turner - Afrikaner Minister
Robbie Bulloch - Jaapie Botha
Gordon Arnell - Minister at Mother's Funeral
Jeremiah Mnisi - Dabula Manzi
Armin Mueller-Stahl - Doc
Paul Tingay - Grandfather

Taglines: He's had to fight all his life. Now he's fighting for theirs.

Release Date: 27 March 1992

Filming Locations: Charterhouse School, Godalming, Surrey, England, UK

Gross: $2,827,107 (USA)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

This is Daniel Craig's theatrical film debut.

Incorrectly regarded as goofs: When PK's character goes from 12 to 18 years old, the caption is "Johannesburg 1948". After the classroom scene and as PK and Morrie are walking past the fountain after the art lesson, Morrie says, " the Queen has for boules..." In 1948, George VI was the monarch. Elizabeth II, his daughter, did not ascend to the throne until 1952, four years later. However, the wife of a British King is known as the "Queen". Therefore, Morrie may have been referring to George VI's wife, Queen Elizabeth (later known as "The Queen Mother" after her daughter ascended to the throne).

P.K.: It makes no difference at all!
Morrie Gilbert: You can't ignore the fact that the man's the intellectual darling of the National Party! He's got as much use for an English boy rutting after his beautiful Afrikaaner daughter as the Queen has for boules... Pardon my French!

User Review

An american ending to an african story


It's been a while since I have seen the movie for the first time. Though I really liked the first two thirds of the film (up to the point, when Stephen Dorff takes over the main-character (but that has nothing to do with his performance)). I found, that the last part was strange and somehow out of continuity. The first part strictly sticks to the idea of experiencing Apartheid from the view of a boy, who is growing up in a system of classes and injustice and who himself fails to really belong to any of these classes. The last part however suddenly tries to be a lot of movies in one: Action, Romance, Patriotism and a Historic Anti-apartheid picture. And I think, trying to do too much, it failed to be anything of the above in the end.

The reason I'm writing this comment now is, that I am just done reading Bryce Courtenays novel. And I was really surprised to learn, that exactly after two thirds of the story, the movie totally goes its own way and ignores the course things take in the novel. The last part of the Novel is just as great as the first. If you liked the movie (or at least the first part) read the book, it's worth it!

To sum it up: I believe The Power Of One had the potential to be an outstanding picture. The music was great, the landscapes beautiful and the acting excellent (Armin Müller Stahl at his best). But unfortunately somebody tried to write an american ending for an african story and couldn't have failed worse.


Comments are closed.