- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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My Mum, Vivien Clinton was in this!
- Eleanor Ellis
I am so excited to start writing a review of this classic film, where my Mum, Vivien Clinton, appeared as Mary, the sister who Kumalo (played by Canada Lee) was searching for, having lost touch with her. The first moment when we see Mary brings a lump to my throat, obviously for very personal reasons ("That's my Mum!").This review will be a collaborative effort with the rest of my family. My regret is that I didn't discover that the film was listed online until after her death. It would have thrilled her to see this listing and to have been able to contribute her memories of making this film. I will update this review once I have input from the rest of the family.The film is a very serious, emotional, yet understated and tremendously dignified commentary on poverty and injustice in South Africa all those years ago. If you have an ounce of empathy or sense of justice in you, it will bring tears to your eyes. Definitely not a feel-good film for much of the action: it is full sadness and pathos.This is now available on DVD from the usual online retailers: previously we only had a poor quality VHS copy recorded off-air from television many years ago.
Having seen both versions of this excellent film, I have to say I prefer the second version but it's the cast of James Earl Jones in the lead, with Richard Harris and the magnificent Charles Dutton that makes the 1995 version so special. The cinematography of the 1995 version is not to be missed, as the topography of South Africa is just breathtakingly beautiful. All of this being said, the actors in this 1951 version are top-notch and I believe they make you feel more of what it was like before apartheid and what gave rise to apartheid. This film will break your heart in a million pieces if you care at all about social justice in our world. The novel is studied in schools around the world and it is easy to see why, as this type if injustice is just as prevalent today as it was in the first half of the 20th century. All injustice is based on fear and this is more than borne out in this film. I believe Alan Paton who wrote the book, and the screenplay for this 1951 version, had a love for his homeland of South Africa that went very deep. Although white, he was an ardent anti-apartheid activist and worked all his life toward more freedoms for black South Africans. Please see this film - either version. It is so worth a couple of hours of your time
Cry, The Beloved Country (1952)
- Carol Rhodes
I was watching this movie on TCM but didn't get to see it in its entirety. It was very captivating because of the use of black and white film and I have looked everywhere for it to buy it or rent it. I hope it is produced on DVD and available for home use in the near future. Sidney Poitier is a terrific actor.