5.9/10
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12 user 14 critic

Savannah (2013)

PG-13 | | Drama, Family, History | 25 April 2014 (USA)
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2:05 | Trailer
Drama about the friendship between an Oxford-educated Southerner and a former black slave in turn-of-the-century Savannah.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jim Caviezel ... Ward Allen
Chiwetel Ejiofor ... Christmas Moultrie
Jaimie Alexander ... Lucy Stubbs
Bradley Whitford ... Jack Cay
Sam Shepard ... Mr. Stubbs
Tracey Walter ... Mathias
Jack McBrayer ... Sir Graham
Hal Holbrook ... Judge Harden
Simone Griffeth ... Mrs. Stubbs
George Whitford George Whitford ... Little Jack Whitford
Doug Nemeth Doug Nemeth ... Cowardly Policeman
Billy Hester Billy Hester ... Roy McClain
Richard Seng Richard Seng ... Homer Peeples
Solon Carter Solon Carter ... Scared Paperboy
Daniel Jones Daniel Jones ... Savannah Sheriff
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Storyline

SAVANNAH is the true story of Ward Allen, a romantic and bombastic character who rejects his plantation heritage for the freedom of life on a river. Ward navigates the change of early 20th century America on the wrong side of the law and society, his loyal friend, a freed slave named Christmas Moultrie, at his side. Master of Shakespeare, and the shotgun that provides Savannah's markets with fowl, Ward fights for his rights as a hunter. His charisma and eloquent rhetoric win the heart of a society woman who defies her father to marry him. An elderly Moultrie tells the story of life on the river with his friend to a little boy, who passes the legendary Ward Allen down to the next generation. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Based on a true story.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief sexuality. | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Desoto Hotel mentioned throughout the movie was a real-life, upscale hotel. The hotel was demolished in the 1960s for a new, high-rise Hilton branded hotel which still exists as the Hilton Savannah Desoto. See more »

Goofs

In the film, Ward Allen died in 1922. He was born in 1856, so he would have been 66 years old, but Jim Caviezel was 44 during filming. Ward Allen actually died in 1931 at the age of 75. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Christmas Moultrie: [hearing a distant gunshot] Boy, that one missed his muster.
Little Jack Whitford: Did he miss?
Christmas Moultrie: Oh, yes sir. Ward Allen, missed his muster.
Little Jack Whitford: Aw, come on, Christmas.
Christmas Moultrie: Uncle John told me the stories.
Little Jack Whitford: Tell me another story, Christmas. The one in the war, nearly killed that Russian.
Christmas Moultrie: Come on now, Jack, I told ya that story a hundred times.
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Soundtracks

Royal Rag
Arranged, Produced and Performed by Gil Talmi
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User Reviews

 
Wade in the Water
23 August 2013 | by ferguson-6See all my reviews

Greetings again from the darkness. Beginning with "Based on a True Story", the movie takes us on a bumpy ride known as the life and times of Ward Allen, a silver-tongued duck hunter with a free spirit like few others. Director Annette Haywood-Carter utilizes Jack Cay Jr's "Ward Allen: Savannah River Market Hunter" as her source material, and the marsh lands of Savannah make for a beautiful setting.

Jim Caviezel dives into the role of Ward Allen and it's initially quite startling to see him play such a loquacious character … we are so accustomed to his normally quiet and stoic nature. Caviezel seems to revel in the courtroom scenes where he recites Shakespeare and charms the judge (Hal Holbrook) and gallery. Flip a switch and the next scene will have Allen exchanging familiar glances and verbal jousts with his duck hunting buddy Christmas (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a freed slave who is the perfect companion for Allen.

Evidently the real Mr. Allen was smart and engaging, but drank too much and constantly pushed the limits of legal hunting. His loyal dog, Rock, follows him everywhere and seems to anticipate his every need. This odd life takes a turn towards normalcy as Allen falls for a beautiful socialite played by Jaime Alexander. The two hit it off and get married, against the wishes of her father played by the great Sam Shepard. Unfortunately, it's at this point that the movie gets convoluted and loses focus, trying to be too many things at once.

Caviezel and Ejiofor have a really nice screen presence together, but the interjections of home life between Caviezel and Alexander just stomp out any flow to the story telling. The attempts to make Mr. Allen a legendary, larger-than-life figure fall short because of the clunky script structure. The bookend with Christmas telling the stories to both a young and adult Jack Cay (Bradley Whitford) just beg for continued focus on the bond between kindred spirits Allen and Christmas. The enigmatic Ward Allen was clearly an interesting man and I look forward to reading Cay's book … it's just disappointing that the script was not sharpened prior to filming. It should be noted that there are a few tremendous songs throughout, including two very different versions of "Wade in the Water".


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 April 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Savannah River - Freiheit am Fluss See more »

Filming Locations:

Savannah, Georgia, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$15,599, 25 August 2013

Gross USA:

$37,240

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$37,240
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | Soundelux

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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