Even though Peter and Kimani grow up together, Kimani soon finds that different races are treated differently. After the father of Kimani is jailed for following tribal customs, Kimani ... See full summary »
In this rarely seen black-and-white film, blacklisted director Martin Ritt (Nuts, Norma Rae) explores the complexities of racial brotherhood and tensions through the characters brilliantly played by Sidney Poitier and John Cassavetes. This emotionally charged drama follows the story of Axel (Cassavetes), a drifter newly arrived in New York City, who goes to work in the West Side Terminal as a porter and immediately makes the acquaintance of Tommy (Poitier), an experienced and cordial porter who is as generous with his friends as he is with his customers. Scenes such as the first meeting between Axel and Tommy's family, as well as the confrontations between Axel and his surly boss (Jack Warden), convey the confidence and compassion that steadily grows between the two men. As the two men confront societal prejudices, Axel is forced to examine himself and his community. In a film often compared to On the Waterfront, director Ritt displays an intuitive insight, simultaneously subtle and sharp.
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