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A Soldier's Story (1984)

 -  Crime | Drama | Mystery  -  2 November 1984 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 5,827 users  
Reviews: 45 user | 18 critic

An African American officer investigates a murder in a racially charged situation in World War II.

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(screenplay), (play)
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Title: A Soldier's Story (1984)

A Soldier's Story (1984) on IMDb 7.2/10

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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 5 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Captain Davenport
...
Sergeant Waters
...
Private Wilkie
...
Corporal Cobb
...
Private Smalls
...
Captain Taylor
Larry Riley ...
C.J. Memphis
...
Corporal Ellis
...
...
Private Henson
...
Big Mary
...
Lieutenant Byrd
...
Captain Wilcox
John Hancock ...
Sergeant Washington
...
Colonel Nivens
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Storyline

A black soldier is killed while returning to his base in the deep south. The white people of the area are suspected at first. A tough black army attorney is brought in to find out the truth. We find out a bit more about the dead soldier in flashbacks - and that he was unpopular. Will the attorney find the killer ? Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Alone, far from home, and far from justice, he has three days to learn the truth about a murder...and the truth is a story you won't forget.

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Mystery | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 November 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La historia de un soldado  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$22,100,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie's source stage production "A Soldier's Play" by Charles Fuller was inspired and loosely based on Herman Melville's novella of Billy Budd (1962). See more »

Goofs

There are captain bars on Lt Byrd lapel and helmet when he encounters Sgt. Waters. See more »

Quotes

Master Sergeant Vernon Waters: Them Nazis ain't all crazy. Whole lot of people just can't seem to fit in to where things seem to be going. Like you, CJ. See, the Black race can't afford you no more. There used to be a time, we'd see someone like you singin', clownin', yassuh-bossin'... and we wouldn't do anything. Folks liked that. You were good. Homey kind of nigger. When they needed somebody to mistreat, call a name or two, they paraded you. Reminded them of the good old days. Not no more. The day of the Geechee is gone, ...
See more »

Connections

Featured in Precious Images (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Bright Red Zoot Suit
Written and Performed by Larry Riley
See more »

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User Reviews

A gripping military drama
12 July 2003 | by (Bernardsville, NJ) – See all my reviews

A Soldier's Story, (1984) is the story of an Army sergeant who is

found murdered in cold blood. Whodunnit? The choices are many

in this engrossing, complex morality play which is set in the

backdrop of the segregated Army of WWII. (Only 60 years ago!)

This is truly a black eye on the military if there ever was one.

Several future stars are featured here including Oscar winner

Denzel Washington, David Alan Grier, and the excellent Howard

Rollins Jr. who stars as an Army Capt. and lawyer sent from

Washington to unravel this mysterious killing. The movie really

belongs to Adolph Ceasar as the murdered sergeant , however. A

WWI veteran and medal winner he constantly affirms the the ability

of the black soldier in a segregated Army as professional, efficient

and courageous, but who fails to stand for any "weaknesses" he

sees in his men, many of whom are naieve country boys, whose

ways he believes are keeping black men subjugated in Uncle

Sam's Army. One chiling scene not to be missed is Ceasar's

solliliquy in the bar with his staff sergeant, in which he describes

an incident in France in WWI. An excellent movie which should be

viewed as part of recent US history. Highly recommended.


12 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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