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Brother John (1971)

6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 348 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 10 critic

An angel comes to Earth to see if the human race is worth saving.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
John Kane
...
Doc Thomas
...
Lloyd Thomas
...
Louisa MacGill
Ramon Bieri ...
Orly Ball
Warren J. Kemmerling ...
George
...
Charley Gray
P. Jay Sidney ...
Rev. MacGill
Richard Ward ...
Frank
...
Henry Birkardt
...
Miss Nettie
...
Cleve
Howard Rice ...
Jimmy
Darlene Rice ...
Marsha
Harry Davis ...
Turnkey
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Storyline

A mysterious man John Kane (Sidney Poitier) who, when he returns to his hometown in Alabama for his sister's funeral, is thought to be an outside labor agitator - until it's revealed that he's really a heavenly messenger. The plot revolves around a strike at the town's big factory. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for thematic elements and some language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 August 1971 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Bruder John  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

John Kane: What do you want from me Doctor Thomas? I can't tell you anything.
Doc Thomas: I know. You might just be a paranoid schizophrenic, and I might be a senile psychotic sharing your delusion.
John Kane: That's possible.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in McCloud: Top of the World, Ma! (1971) See more »

Soundtracks

Children of the Summer
Music by Quincy Jones and lyrics by Ernie Sheldon
Performed by Clydie King
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User Reviews

Well done; Poitier and Geer and great, especially together
22 March 2011 | by (NC) – See all my reviews

In a Southern town, kindly old Doc Thomas is giving an elderly woman what appears at first to be a routine examination. But then he must tell her, in his caring way, that she is too far gone and while they can try, she needs to prepare for the worst.

The woman's brother John cannot be found. And yet somehow he has always managed to show up when someone he cared about died. This time is no exception; while the family wonders how to contact him, John is already in his sister's hospital room.

After the funeral, John stays around for a while, which is unusual for him. He entertains a group of school kids by telling about his adventures in Africa and showing them the culture of the people he met. The kids' teacher seems to be an old girlfriend, and the possibility exists of the romance rekindling.

Doc Thomas should probably give up his practice, and the townspeople know this. He may not be senile yet, but he is showing a decline.

Meanwhile, the union at an area factory appears ready to strike. The black workers aren't treated well, and some of the cops in town are racist. There may be trouble. Will John's presence help or hurt the situation?

Sidney Poitier gives his usual masterful performance. And Will Geer does an outstanding job overall, even holding his own with the great Poitier in a powerful scene near the end.

We never really learn what John does or why he seems to have supernatural abilities. All we know is that he is very intelligent and has lived many places and done many things.

There are plenty of other good performances and good writing.

It's worth seeing.


3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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