6.9/10
894
20 user 4 critic

A Lesson Before Dying (1999)

PG-13 | | Drama | TV Movie 22 May 1999
In the 1940s South, an African-American man is wrongly accused of the killing of a white store owner. In his defense, his white attorney equates him with a lowly hog, to indicate that he ... See full summary »

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(novel), (teleplay)
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Won 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 10 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Grant Wiggins
...
Tante Lou
...
Jefferson
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Miss Emma
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Reverend Ambrose
...
Vivian Baptiste (as Lisa Arrindell Anderson)
...
Edna Guidry
...
Sheriff Guidry
Stuart Culpepper ...
Henri Pichot
Patty Mack ...
Inez
Von Coulter ...
Farrell Jarreau
...
Clarence
Wynton Yates ...
Louis Washington
...
Irene
Cierra Meche ...
Estelle
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Storyline

In the 1940s South, an African-American man is wrongly accused of the killing of a white store owner. In his defense, his white attorney equates him with a lowly hog, to indicate that he didn't have the sense to know what he was doing. Nevertheless convicted, he is sentenced to die, but his godmother and the aunt of the local schoolteacher convince the schoolteacher to go to the convicted man's cell each day to try to reaffirm to him that he is not an animal but a man with dignity. Written by BOB STEBBINS <stebinsbob@aol.com>

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Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for a scene of violence, brief strong language and some sensuality | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 May 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Lesson Before Dying - Nachhilfestunden in der Todeszelle  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The poem Grant reads to the children before Farrell comes to class with news from Sheriff Guidry the 2nd time is Edgar Allen Poe's "Annabel Lee." See more »

Goofs

Jefferson's execution date is right after Easter. Yet as the schoolchildren are going to the jail for a last visit with him, there are autumn leaves on the ground. See more »

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User Reviews

 
A lovely gem.
11 March 2001 | by See all my reviews

I taped this film when it was on tv and come back to it every so often. It is very well done, superbly crafted, and the storytelling is excellent. But what keeps me watching is the performances, specifically Don Cheadles. This man is quite simply a great actor, he is where Denzel was ten years ago. Cicely Tyson remains one of our greatest assets, and the whole cast brings a sensitivity and authenticity to it that makes it sing. Worth watching with your kids, it has valuable lessons for us all.


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