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Strange Fruit (2002)

 -  Documentary  -  May 2002 (USA)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 79 users   Metascore: 73/100
Reviews: 5 user | 7 critic | 8 from Metacritic.com

In 1937, after seeing a photo depicting the lynching of a black man in the south, Bronx-born high school teacher Abel Meeropol wrote a poem entitled "Strange Fruit" that begins with the ... See full summary »

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Title: Strange Fruit (2002)

Strange Fruit (2002) on IMDb 7.3/10

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Cast

Credited cast:
Dorothy Thigpen ...
Narrator (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Amina Baraka ...
Herself
Amiri Baraka ...
Himself
E.M. 'Woody' Beck ...
Himself
Don Byron ...
Himself (archive footage)
Hazel Carby ...
Herself
Michael Denning ...
Himself
Henry Foner ...
Himself
...
Himself (as Milt Gabler)
Farah Jasmine Griffin ...
Herself
...
Herself (archive footage)
Robert Howard ...
Himself
Bernie Kassoy ...
Himself
Honey Kassoy ...
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Abbey Lincoln ...
Herself
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Storyline

In 1937, after seeing a photo depicting the lynching of a black man in the south, Bronx-born high school teacher Abel Meeropol wrote a poem entitled "Strange Fruit" that begins with the words: "Southern trees bear a strange fruit / Blood on the leaves and blood at the root." He set the poem to music and a few years later convinced Billy holiday to record it in a legendary heartbreaking performance. Intertwining jazz genealogy, biography, performance footage, and the history of lynching, director Joel Katz fashions a fascinating discovery of the lost story behind a true American classic. Written by Excerpted from Coolidge Corner Theatre Program Update

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May 2002 (USA)  »

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Outo hedelmä  »

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Lady Day ushers in rare videotape.
13 January 2005 | by (Washington, DC) – See all my reviews

I only wanted to see this documentary for one reason: to watch Ms. Holiday perform the title song. The song's extremely sad, bitter lyrics are legendary, but I'd heard for years that it had been given something of a dramatic, almost eccentric, interpretation by Ms. Holiday herself. I'd assumed that if there was a surviving recording of it, it was in some B-level motion picture or newsreel. And here's the big surprise of the documentary: when we finally see Holiday, it is not on film, but on live television. A surviving b/w reel-to-reel videotape of a 1958 (or 1959) BBC broadcast shows Ms. Holiday- beautiful, regal, but somewhat melancholy (with hair severely pulled back and in a glittering dress)- stylishly reciting with piano accompaniment for 3 minutes of what must be the earliest surviving videotape ever recorded-- and just a scant 5 months before her death. It's like two phenomena were jelled into one performance: modern television technology and an artist very much at the end of her own life. Blew me out of the water!!


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