A fascinating cinéma vérité documentary which has to be seen to be believed.
A truly remarkable documentary which had cameras with all the principals involved in the confrontation between Governor George Wallace of Alabama and the federal courts in letting two black students enroll in the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa. I was awed at witnessing the planning sessions of President John F. Kennedy, Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, General Abrams, Deputy Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach, etc. The University had already approved the admission of the two students; Alabama was the only remaining state which had not fully integrated its university system, and Governor Wallace vowed to stand at the entrance and prevent the students from entering. What the federal government will do when that happens is the focus of the documentary? The tension is real! The drama is real! The participants are real! A most extraordinary documentary I never knew existed before it bowled me over when I saw it in 1981 in a theater, and again when recently shown on the Turner Classic Movies channel. I would have thought it could never have been made. After all, I'm sure Governor Wallace knew it was a lost cause, yet he gave permission for the film makers to film him and his staff and the confrontation. The principals were covered by four teams of film makers and most of the footage appeared unstaged. Shots of Robert Kennedy at home with his kids and George Wallace with his daughter (or granddaughter) helped to make them more human rather than larger than life. The sense of history was overpowering. A must see for anyone interested in the civil rights movement or any of the participants.
17 of 17 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?