Native Son (1986)

PG  |   |  Drama  |  12 December 1986 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 419 users  
Reviews: 8 user | 5 critic

In 1940s Chicago, a young black man takes a job as a chauffeur to a white family, which takes a turn for the worse when he accidentally kills the teenage daughter of the couple and then tries to cover it up.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Walter Rivers ...


Bigger Thomas, an African American who lives in an impoverished neighborhood, is employed by a prosperous white family who live in the suburbs of a major city. The money Bigger makes at his new job will be used to supplement his mother's income. As a chauffeur, he is directed by the father of the family to take Mary, the daughter, to the university. Instead, Mary decides to pick up her Socialist boyfriend, Jan, and to spend the time drinking and partying. Jan and Mary portray a young liberal couple who venture into a black neighborhood with Bigger for the sole purpose of being entertained at Ernie's, a black nightclub. On the way home, Mary becomes inebriated and Bigger must get her to her bedroom without being detected. Mary's mother, who is blind, enters the room and Bigger panics at the thought of being caught with a white woman. He accidentally kills Mary by placing a pillow over her head to keep her quiet. Still frightened, Bigger disposes of the body in the furnace, possibly ... Written by Broncine G. Carter

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




PG | See all certifications »




Release Date:

12 December 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Native Son - Im Namen der Gerechtigkeit  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$2,000,000 (estimated)


$1,301,121 (USA)

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


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Did You Know?


Bigger Thomas: That white girl, she drank too much. It ain't my fault what happened after that.
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Remake of Native Son (1951) See more »


"Jones Come Down (Call Me, Call Me, Call Me)
Written by James Mtume, Diane Silver and Dunn E. Pearson
Performed by Stephanie Mills
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User Reviews

This story and movie(s)...
3 March 2007 | by (Chicago, IL) – See all my reviews

Hey look, deal with it, there are much better portrayals of the hardship of black America than this. Although I think this story is weak, my criticism is focused on the poor execution of the story, which I have mentioned, blows.

This was made in the mid-80's and is horrible in the music/score department. It's funny to see Oprah as a latter-day crack-whore type.

The scene where Bigger stuffs Elizabeth McGovern into the incinerator. Pure classic cinema. First off, I don't care how drunk you are, you will react to 1200F degree flame (no matter how bad your acting). But they really milked that was comical. I'll tell you what though, I had great satisfaction in seeing Elizabeth McGovern burn in a faux death; she annoys me.

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