William Boyals, a successful, black, gay attorney in New York, is drawn back to the small, rural Louisiana town he long ago escaped from to investigate the lynching of a black gay childhood friend.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ron Allen ...
Kelvin Ayers
Cornell S. Thomas ...
Henchman #1 (as Cornell Thomas)
...
William Boyals
Aaron Kleven ...
Cedric (as Aaron Klevin)
Sam Jones ...
Sheriff Jensey
...
Emma Ayers
Charlie Schroeder ...
Tommy
Wilbert Lewis ...
Preacher (as Reverend Wilbert Lewis)
...
Duane Ayers
Nancy B. Shepard ...
Funeral Mourner (as Nancy B. Shepard Ph.D.)
Sandra Lutcher ...
Funeral Mourner
Charlotte Washington ...
Funeral Mourner
Thelma Y. Thomas ...
Funeral Mourner
...
Deputy Conover
Jon Finck ...
Deputy Adams
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Storyline

William Boyals, a successful, black, gay attorney in New York, is drawn back to the small, rural Louisiana town he long ago escaped from to investigate the lynching of a black gay childhood friend.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Southern trees bear...Strange Fruit See more »


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Release Date:

22 June 2005 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

This movie was filmed in late 2004, after Barack Obama was the keynote speaker at the Democratic National Convention, and some television pundits had referred to him as "a very articulate black man." That phrase appears on a billboard as the first scene in Louisiana. See more »

Crazy Credits

Chico was not harmed in the making of this film. See more »

Connections

References In the Heat of the Night (1967) See more »

Soundtracks

We Old School
by Carmelo Angel Ruiz
(uncredited)
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User Reviews

 
The levels that Strange Fruit works on is mind boggling.
2 March 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I saw this film at the Pan African Film Festival and I will be honest I was a little skeptical seeing that someone white was attempting to tell this story (they introduced the writer/director before the film) but from that long opening shot, of the slow tracking shot down the river over the credits I was taken in. Usually when seeing films at festivals, you kind of expect a level of amateurishness to the whole endeavor, but I was thrilled to see an actual real life film. The production value was incredible, and although the filmmakers were cagey about the budget at the Q&A afterwards, I would guess close to a cool million.

As to my fears of the filmmakers race telling the story of the lynching of a gay black man? They were unfounded. The levels that Strange Fruit works on is mind boggling. Most movies these days are afraid to tackle any one of the many issues this film addresses. From racism, homophobia, family dynamics, Schickner navigates his way through such thorny topics without blinking, and right when the audience thinks it has it all figured out the writer pulls the rug out from us all in a twist ending sure to excite and enraged all at once.

Kent Faulcon is a revelation as the star. There was an excitement in the crowd because I think many were feeling what I was as the movie played on: "This is a star in the making". In fact, every actor from Faulcon to the waitress with one line makes you believe you are in the backwoods of Louisiana and not at some actors workshop. It was especially thrilling to see my very first boyhood crush, Berlinda Tolbert who played Jenny on the Jeffersons as the grieving mother. "Moving on up indeed!" The best was the sheriff, he was such a hateful redneck with a heart.

If this film makes it to your town do yourself a favor and check it out. More films need to be like this!,


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