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Deacons for Defense (2003)

TV Movie  -   -  Drama  -  16 February 2003 (USA)
7.0
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The words "Black Power" bring back memories of names like Stokely Carmichael, H. Rap Brown, and Eldridge Cleaver, but in Bogalusa, LA a group of harassed Afro-Americans had decided they'd ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Marcus Clay
...
William Chase
...
Michael Deane
...
Reverend 'Rev' Gregory
Gene Mack ...
T.J.
...
Archie
Paul Benjamin ...
Otis
...
Baily
...
Rose Clay
Serena Lee ...
Lucille Clay
Khafre Armatrading ...
Brooks Clay
...
Charles Hillibrand
Beau Starr ...
Neely
...
Lawson
Aaron Walpole ...
Jimmy
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Storyline

The words "Black Power" bring back memories of names like Stokely Carmichael, H. Rap Brown, and Eldridge Cleaver, but in Bogalusa, LA a group of harassed Afro-Americans had decided they'd had enough and took up arms to defend themselves and force the white power structure to listen to them. This took place during "Freedom Summer", 1964, right after the Civil Rights Act had become law. Fact based movie stars Forest Whitaker and Ossie Davis, the former as the founder of the Deacons of Defense and Justice (DDJ) and the latter as a peaceful minister trying to prevent the unavoidable violence that will follow. The story revolves around the white-controlled factory which provides 70% of the town's income and employees 40% of its people. Segregation is still clinging on within the factory, with blacks denied the supervisory positions and forced into separate lunchrooms, bathrooms, and drinking fountains. The Ku Klux Klan (KKK) has its strongest power in this area and, as the DDJ gets armed ... Written by AzRanger <Ranger273@azrangers.org>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violent images and language | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

16 February 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A védelem diakónusai  »

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Did You Know?

Quotes

[discussing ways to fight the Klan]
Archie: But Marcus, ain't we taking this a little too far?
T.J.: It's called for, and you know it, Archie.
Marcus Clay: If this is an army of one, then this is an army of one. I gave my word.
Otis: Gentlemen, I've been waiting for this day, my whole life.
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Connections

Featured in 10th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Good Film about a little known group
29 July 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The only nitpick I have with this film is that it is obviously NOT filmed in Bogalusa, LA. It also does not show the poverty of African Americans who lived and worked there - one gets the impression the blacks there were leading perfectly cozy middle class lives, save for racial segregation and oppression. These folks did not live in 3 bedroom nicely decorated, cozy homes. They live in what amounts to shanties and the poverty there is third world. Bogalusa is not some idyllic looking, charming small town. It is a very depressing, gloomy place, centered around a paper mill which smells horrible (and you can smell it all over town). By not showing this it disconnects racial oppression from how bad the economic oppression was (and still is), and it's always there.

Other than that, the Deacons rock, and predated the Panthers by several years.


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