6.4/10
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4 user 11 critic

Native Land (1942)

Not Rated | | Documentary, Drama, History | 11 May 1942 (USA)
Paul Robeson narrates a mix of dramatizations and archival footage about the bill of rights being under attack during the 1930s by union busting corporations, their spies and contractors. ... See full summary »

Directors:

Leo Hurwitz, Paul Strand

Writers:

Leo Hurwitz, Ben Maddow (as David Wolff) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
1 win. See more awards »

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"Strange Victory" is about racial bias in post World War II America. Folowing "Native Land" in Leo Hurwitz' filmography, it uses some of the same techniques: dramatized scenes interspersed ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Robeson ... Narrator / Vocalist (voice)
Fred Johnson Fred Johnson ... Fred Hill, farmer
Mary George Mary George ... Hill's Wife
John Rennick John Rennick ... Hill's Son
Amelia Romano Amelia Romano ... Young Girl in Cleveland
Houseley Stevenson ... White Sharecropper (as Housely Stevens)
Louis Grant Louis Grant ... Black Sharecropper
James Hanney James Hanney ... Mack, union president
Howard Da Silva ... Jim - informant (as Howard DaSylva)
Art Smith ... Harry Carlyle
Bert Conway Bert Conway
Richard Bishop Richard Bishop ... Spy Executive
Charles Jordan Charles Jordan
Vaughn King Vaughn King ... Mary, Mack's wife
Robert Strauss ... Frank Mason, grocer
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Storyline

Paul Robeson narrates a mix of dramatizations and archival footage about the bill of rights being under attack during the 1930s by union busting corporations, their spies and contractors. In dramatizations, we see a Michigan farmer beaten for speaking up at a meeting, a union man murdered in an apartment in Cleveland, two sharecroppers near Fort Smith Arkansas shot by men deputized by the local sheriff, a spy stealing the names of union members, and a dead Chicago union man eulogized. In archival footage we witness police and goons beating lawfully assembled union organizers, and we see men at work and union families at play. The narration celebrates patriotism and democracy. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Picture with the Most Exciting Story of Our Time!


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 May 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Szülőföldem See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Frontier Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Reeves Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Feature film debut of Robert Strauss. See more »

Connections

Featured in What Is Cinema? (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Native Land was a very compelling documentary of what unions went through in the mid-20th century
21 February 2014 | by tavmSee all my reviews

When Paul Robeson returned to the U.S. after spending the previous 12 years in England, this was the first film here he was involved in which he narrates about the plight of various union workers being oppressed-and even killed-for speaking up. This film-directed by Paul Strand & Leo Hurwitz-is a mixture of reenactments and actual documentary footage about certain events. Compelling score by Marc Blitzstein and Robeson gives his narration some feeling. Some scenes may shock in the way many deaths occur. The tone veers back-and-forth between despair and inspiration but there always seem some purpose to what is happening and depicted. So on that note, I recommend Native Land. P.S. The disc I saw this on was part of the Paul Robeson collection and had a nice extra called "The Story of Native Land" which has Tom Hurwitz-son of co-director Leo-recount how it came to be.


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