Mississippi Burning

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  • Topic: Ku Klux Klan, Mississippi Burning, Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
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  • Published : August 18, 2012
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Film Review:
Mississippi Burning
By Kelly Johnson

In Mississippi June 1964, three civil rights workers were murdered after being released from jail for speeding. The movie, directed by Alan Parker is based on a true story of the FBI investigation on the MIBURN case to find the three civil rights workers. Around this time African-Americans were found to be inferior compared to the white Anglo-Saxon Christian members of Mississippi. Agent Alan Ward tries everything to solve the case within the books, but his partner Agent Rupert Anderson, a former sheriff in Mississippi, understands the local culture and knows the case won’t be solved abiding by the books. Together they go through a diversity of leads and come up empty-handed, until the town sheriff’s wife (Frances McDormand) steps forward and reveals some shocking information. In order to solve the case, the two contrasting agents must not only overcome the hostility of the local authorities and the black community but challenge with their own differences as well.  But even with "Mississippi Burning" being based on a true story, it is not a documentary. This movie is a gritty police drama, bloody, passionate and sometimes surprisingly funny about the efforts of Agent Alan Ward and Agent Rupert Anderson into the disappearances of these three men. Few men could be more opposite than these two agents Anderson and Ward. With Anderson believing in keeping a low profile, by hanging around the barber shop, sort of smelling out the likely perpetrators, while Ward believes in a show of force and calls in hundreds of federal agents and even the National Guard to search for the missing workers. The film which stars, Gene Hackman (who was nominated for best actor, 1988), Frances McDormand (nominated for best supporting actress, 1988), Willem Dafoe and Brad Dourif won the academy award for best cinematography in 1989. Set in the U.S state of Mississippi in 1964 the film looks at how terrible and pointless racism was and...
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