电影名称 The World Unseen
- 中文名称 看不见的世界
- 类型 戏剧
- 国家 南非 / 英国
- 语言 英语
- 时长 1 hr 33 min (93 min) / 1 hr 34 min (94 min) (South Africa)
- 上映时间 3 April 2009 (UK)
Set in South Africa in the year 1952 during the Apartheid era, a story of true love against all odds takes place.
The story opens as Amina (Sheetal Sheth), a young Indian woman, is outside of her cafe on a ladder. A crash is heard as someone runs over their flower pot outside. Amina is the exact opposite of what a woman is supposed to be, wearing trousers, a button down shirt, and a worn hat, with her hair down and unkempt. She owns her own cafe, serves blacks and whites in the same area, and stands up to men of all sorts; In short, Amina is by no means typical. She runs her cafe with Jacob (David Dennis), an older black man who is very timid, and very quick to follow the rules. But when two policemen come to threaten the cafe for serving blacks along with whites, he bravely shields Madeleine (Grethe Fox), the white postmistress, from their unrestrained violent behavior. Madeleine thanks Jacob, and the first romance is kindled.
Meanwhile, Miriam (Lisa Ray), is a typical Indian housewife having recently emigrated from India. She performs her duty of caring for her two children, and one on the way, while also taking dismissive comments and abusive tendencies from men, including her husband Omar (Parvin Dabas). They live with Farah (Natalie Becker), a housewife who is really a steamy temptress, and her husband, the dolt, Sadru (Rajesh Gopie) in Cape Town. One day, the men allow Miriam and Farah to go to a cafe. Both women dress in their traditional clothing, and find themselves at the Location Cafe. Amina's cafe. A waitress spills a tray of something, and Miriam bends over to help her pick it up, but the waitress is quickly excused by Amina, who also kneels to pick up. Miriam and Amina's eyes meet, and there is this long glace between them as if its love-at-first-sight. The timid Miriam curiously steals glances at the trouser wearing Amina, who is dismissed by Farah as a worthless rebel, but Miriam is accepting.
Omar finds a house in the middle of nowhere, where they then move out to be on their own. They make their livelihood running a shop out of this house, while Omar works in Cape Town. Shortly after their move, the baby is born. Farah comes to help tend to the shop, but her motives become clear. One day, Miriam goes into labor. As her baby is being born, Farah and Omar's affair comes into the open when Farah seduces Omar in the shop. Miriam's son and daughter come home from school just as Omar and Farah pull their clothes back on. Then, the nurse comes out and says "congratulations on your baby girl".
One day soon after, they receive news that the illegally married Rehmat (Nandana Sen), Omar's sister, and De Witt (Colin Moss), a white man, have arrived from France to visit De Witt's dying father. They must hide because, if caught, they would go to jail. All go to the Location Cafe, where Omar asks Amina to help build a vegetable garden at their house. Amina agrees.
Amina comes to work on the vegetable garden, and Miriam plays the part of good housewife, bringing her food. Amina asks her to stay and eat with her, but Miriam is uncomfortable. When Amina questions Miriam's motives and thoughts, Miriam is stunned and walks away. But she comes back, and tells Amina that she was the first person to smile at her in eight days. Later on, while Omar spends the night in Cape Town, Miriam invites Amina to stay the night, saying that it is too dark for her to drive. Neither woman can sleep. Both make their way to the kitchen, where Amina tells Miriam the story of why she acts the way she acts. Miriam cannot understand why Amina doesn't want to marry, but Amina tells her that her grandmother was raped by a black man and then cast off to India after her baby, Amina's mother, is born part black. While leaving on the train, her former husband stole their son out of her grandmother's arms. From then on, her grandmother warned of the opression in marriage, and Amina took it to heart. But, she says, this is not the only reason she won't marry. Then, the baby cries, and Miriam goes to her. The next morning she oversleeps, but wakes to find that Amina has already prepared the children for school, and is ready to get to work in the garden.
As a gift, Amina gives Miriam a book of poetry. Innitially Miriam refuses it, because Omar is not happy with her reading, but eventually takes it. Amina comes with other news too. She has come to offer Miriam a job cooking Indian food at the Location Cafe. Miriam says that she has to watch the kids and she must tend the shop but Amina says that they'll make it in the mornings, and that no one comes to the shop anyway. It is clear that Miriam wants to accept. Omar arrives and Miriam tells him what is going on, and that she said she couldn't. Omar tells Amina that it's a shame, because if Miriam could drive it would be different. He has told her many times to learn to drive, but she doesn't want to, and has no need to work. Amina takes this opportunity to reveal that she teaches driving, and would teach Miriam. Miriam accepts.
Back in Cape Town, Amina's father's (Bernard White) mother (Usha Kahn) arrives from India. Immediately she sets to finding a suitable marriage for Amina. One suitor comes to dinner with his family to meet Amina. A few days after, the parents of the family visit Grandmother, and tell her about Amina's trouser wearing habit. Grandmother has a heart attack and dies on the spot.
The two racist policemen come to Miriam's house while the children are at school. They are looking for Rehmat and De Witt. They forcefully search her house, but claim that Miriam is hiding something. Then, the school bus arrives. The policemen rush and grab the children, and start to stuff them into their police wagon. They are locked up, and Miriam cries and pleads to let them go. She tells the police if they let her children out, she will tell where De Witt and Rehmat are. She reveals that they are in Cape Town with Farah and Sadru. The police release Miriam's children and leave.
That evening, there is a large Indian party at the cafe. While everyone is gathered and dancing, Rehmat comes running in asking for help. The police are searching for her. At first, Amina denies knowing Rehmat, pushing her out the door, but then says that if she had helped her in front of the customers, one of them would break when the police arrived. While this is happening, the police question Farah, who gives Amina away. Two policemen burst into the party, and ask where she is, to which Jacob replies she is taking a nap. They come into Amina's room, question her, and she denies knowing where Rehmat is, or even which woman they are talking about. One policeman slaps her, and the other threatens her cafe, but they eventually leave. Amina then opens her wardrobe and Rehmat crawls out from a hole in the wall, and is safe.
During the night, a truck comes to the shop, and the man asks for new lights, saying he's hit a black man. Miriam sneaks outside, against Omar's wishes and against her position, and helps the man. She comes back in, and Omar asks her where she's been. She lies, saying she thought she'd left the wash out, but her wrist has blood on it. Omar backhands her across the face. The next day, Miriam asks her servant to find a box of books. She picks one out, writes on the inside cover, wraps it, and asks her servant to take it to the post office for Amina.
Omar receives an invitation to Grandmother's funeral, and says they will not go because they don't owe the family anything. Miriam reminds him who saved his sister, and they go. Amina refuses to leave her room, so when Miriam gets there, she goes to her. Amina is reading the book. They begin talking about Amina's outfit, and Amina says that she doesn't feel like herself. Miriam agrees she doesn't look like herself. Amina changes back into her masculine outfit while Miriam looks on, half hiding behind the door. She says she wishes she could be more like Amina, and Amina says that she should be careful what she wishes for.
Driving lessons begin. Amina arrives, and Miriam gets into the truck. They drive around the corner, and switch seats. Amina attempts to show Miriam the peddles, but Miriam already knows what they're called. Amina asks if she already knows how to drive, but Miriam denies it. Amina begins to show Miriam the gears.
In the meantime, Farah is preparing for a visit from Omar. She hears the door close and assumes it's him. She gets out of the bath tub, and seductively wraps her silk robe around her shoulders. To her surprise, it is not Omar, rather her husband. Sadru is rather surprised to see Farah like this, but being slow as he is, he doesn't question her. He falls asleep in the corner, and Farah goes off. Then, Omar rushes in calling for Farah. Sadru wakes up, and Omar is startled and unsure of what to do. They all sit down to the table and begin to talk.
Back at the driving lesson, Miriam has put her hand on the gear shift. Amina puts her hand over Miriam's, and begins to show her the gears. They look at each other, and their faces slowly drift together. They kiss. As Miriam shakes, Amina reaches for her hand. Then, around the corner comes Omar. He calls out for Miriam, and the women separate instantly, but they remain close together. Omar forces Miriam out of the car, and Amina says they will finish their driving lesson later. Luckily, Omar is none the wiser, and is only so anxious to tell Miriam that his affair with Farah is over. Miriam tells him that he's hurt her, and helps the children inside.
Amina speaks to Jacob in the cafe about how she wants someone, but can't have them. She tells him how hard it is, but he will hear none of it. He says that she is the reason he is becoming brave. He says that he has spent his whole life following their rules, but he refuses to die alone because of them. He tells Amina of his date with Madeleine. Amina has renewed hope.
The next day when Amina goes to give driving lessons, she gets out of the car timidly, and goes to Miriam. She has no intention of giving a driving lesson. Miriam takes her inside and explains that she cannot do this, but that she does care for her. She sits on her bed. Amina asks her one favor; to lay down and close her eyes. She asks her to pretend that nothing but the two of them exists. They kiss again, but the baby cries, and both sit up. Miriam renews that she cannot do this. Amina wants her to run away, but she assures her that she won't because she has children. Amina leaves.
Jacob is at the post office with Madeleine, locking up, when a policeman enters. He asks what is going on, and sees Jacob. He tells Jacob that blacks aren't allowed in that area, but Madeleine thinks quickly to protect him. She says he is just her driver. They leave, and Jacob acts the part, driving Madeleine home. He is distraught, and refuses dinner with her, because it just isn't possible. He walks away, and both of them are disappointed.
Amina is packing to leave. There is a knock at her door, and she yells to not disturb her, but it is her father who comes in. She is relieved. They have a short conversation about what she is doing, and in the end he tells her not to leave. As he closes the door, he tells her that she should not go, because Miriam wouldn't know where to find her.
Miriam is in another fight with Omar. She says she will work in the cafe, and he says that no wife of his will work. Miriam has gained confidence, and asks if he wants to leave her. She refuses to give in. Omar rears back to slap her, and Miriam screams "no", that he is going to have to find another way to deal with her. Omar then goes on a rampage, shoving everything off of the tables in the shop. The child wakes up, and Miriam comforts him.
The next day, Jacob is sitting in the cafe with Amina. They hear a crash of someone running into the flower pot outside, again. They both roll their eyes, and get up to see the damage. Amina looks to the flower pot, and then to the car. Out of the car steps Miriam. She walks up to Amina and asks if the position is still available. Amina tells her "yes". Jacob comes up, and welcomes her in.
|south africa ||driving|
|lesbian kiss ||racism|
|pregnancy ||indian family|
|year 1952 ||independent film|
|based on novel || |