A man in a gleaming white suit comes to a small Southern town on the eve of integration. He calls himself a social reformer. But what he does is stir up trouble--trouble he soon finds he can't control.
A man in a gleaming white suit comes to a small Southern town on the eve of integration. His name is Adam Cramer. He calls himself a social reformer. But his aim is to incite the people against letting black children into the town's white school. Soon he has the white citizens of the town worked up. He thinks he's leading them; but a man he befriends and immediately betrays knows better. The people have become a mob. The black leader of a church and a white newspaper editor soon feel its wrath. But after a false accusation against a black student, Adam Cramer may find the people are totally and permanently out of his control. Written by
As a white Northerner at 15, I had no idea in 1960 of what rude realities awaited me as I hitchhiked through the South that summer. In Birmingham I was thrown into the two worlds of black/white; I was escorted out of the black's bathroom at the bus station, kindly - gently - but firmly. I witnessed prayer-sayers at street corners extolling salvation and gateways leading away from oppression, people coerced to sit in the crowded back of the bus... whites throwing epitaphs at anyone black who happened to pass by... By the time I reached New Orleans, I had had a complete education in racial prejudice and hate. I was stunned.
So forty years later I watched the Intruder. It left me cold and I begin remembering that trip to the South so long ago. Sitting here in my easy chair in South Carolina today, I can say that some things have changed and some things haven't.
The movie, at least from my experience, presents a milieu that is faithfully true of the South in the early '60's. Of course, it descends from that point into the murky depths of the manipulation of fear and hatred within the human spirit. It is a raw, dramatic expose - hard to watch at times. And I can't respect enough that this movie is so cutting edge and so truly represents the attitudes and motivations of folks during those days.
For the adventurer who has a curiosity of how life was in that period, and for the psychology buff who is interested in the roots of human nature, this movie is a must.
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