A minister is malevolent and sinister behind his righteous facade. He consorts with, and later extorts from, the owner of a gambling house, and betrays an honest girl, eventually driving ... See full summary »
An examination of the life of actor and singer Paul Robeson, from his first major triumphs on the stage in the 1920s through his gradually increasing social activism in the 1930s and 1940s,... See full summary »
Saul J. Turell
An undercover government agent on a case in Mississipi meets and falls in love with a beautiful young woman who's being menaced by a local crime boss. He rescues the girl, and they leave ... See full summary »
In a juke joint, sharecropper Zeke falls for a beautiful dancer, Chick, but she's only setting him up for a rigged craps game. He loses $100, the money he got for the sale of his family's ... See full summary »
Daniel L. Haynes,
Nina Mae McKinney,
A minister is malevolent and sinister behind his righteous facade. He consorts with, and later extorts from, the owner of a gambling house, and betrays an honest girl, eventually driving them both to ruin. Written by
Martin H. Booda <email@example.com>
The board censors initially had strong objections to the dark and sinister portrayal of a man of the cloth. But with no money left for reshoots, producer Oscar Micheaux shot a quick ending which makes most of the film's action a dream of the heroine's. See more »
Its nice to see there was a Black director (Micheaux) with the gumption to take on difficult themes (like a crooked preacher and sexual abuse). Unfortunately his mastery of technique wasn't very good; this movie resembles the sort of thing D.W. Griffith was doing in 1913, both in form and tone (cf. A Girl and her Trust). Cinema had evolved by 1925.
There is one great comic sequence that is worth the price of the movie, an over-the-top sermon (on the valley of dry bones) in which the whiskey-guzzling preacher has his congregation in such ecstasy that they do what looks suspiciously like break-dancing. Robeson, usually the good guy, here proves that he is equally adept at playing a sleazebag when required. There is a similar "sermon" in The Blues Brothers that was surely inspired by this one. The comical stereotypes would normally cause us to cry "racism", but this movie was made by and for blacks.
Body and Soul explores serious issues and has moments of great fun, but is mainly of historical interest.
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