Lost in the Stars (Blu-ray)
Directed by Daniel Mann
Directed by Daniel Mann
The American Film Theatre's Lost in the Stars transforms Alan Paton's world-famous novel of racial oppression, Cry the Beloved Country, into a tragic and beautiful film musical unlike any you've ever seen. Gilded by Maxwell Anderson's lucid lyrics and Kurt Weill's (The Three Penny Opera) powerful music, and guided by Daniel Mann's (Playing for Time) sensitive direction, this one-of-a-kind film is both a heartbreaking indictment of a cruel society and a poetic testament to the millions of forgotten lives ground beneath the heel of apartheid.
Brock Peters (To Kill a Mockingbird) is Stephen Kumalo, a black South African minister searching the unfamiliar back alleys and shantytowns of Johannesburg for his son, Absalom. But Kumalo's unwavering faith is put to the test when he finds Absalom in jail facing a capital murder charge. Courage, dignity, and sacrifice fall prey to the whirlwind of racist hypocrisy and hollow justice in Absalom's trial. Absalom's reunion and reconciliation with her father, his jailhouse marriage to his pregnant sweetheart Irina (Melba Moore), and his heroic determination to tell the truth no matter the cost set the stage for a tragic climax of both epic proportion and documentary immediacy.
Peters, whom Weill declared, "one of the great voices of American theatre," delivers a flawlessly moving performance. Singing the title song, "Lost in the Stars," in an empty church to which he will never return, Kumalo's agony offers spiritual richness in place of poverty and human grace in place of prejudice, even as his heart becomes another casualty of vicious ethnic hatred.
Blu-ray Extras Include:
Interview with Edie Landau / “Ely Landau: In Front of the Camera,” a promotional film for the American Film Theatre / Gallery of trailers for the American Film Theatre / English SDH subtitles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing
"Stunning in its simplicity...haunting music here splendidly done." - Emerson Batdorff - The Cleveland Plain-Dealer
Brock Peters is outstanding...his ending scene is a triumph." - Atlanta Jounal Constitution
RT' @austinfilm': "The film is a masterpiece, so you should see it any way you can."' @vulture's' Bilge Ebiri gives another glowing review to M…
Certified Fresh' @RottenTomatoes' 🍅 Critic's Pick' @NYTimes' ☑️ Best Actor' @la_Biennale' 🎭 Platform Prize' @TIFF_NET' 🏆 M…' https://t.co/jzXbooUnV8'
RT' @Lanre_Bakare': This William Greaves doc about the 1972 National Black Political Convention looks incredible' https://t.co/5ehbFbl886'
RT' @a_ehunt': I wrote a little thing on Greaves’ NATIONTIME restoration & the virtual Black National Convention of 2020, which weaves footag…
RT' @LightboxFilmCtr': William Greaves' "Nationtime" returns to our virtual cinema this Friday, Oct. 23. The film highlights the important po…
RT' @BrattleTheatre': Opening Friday! Sidney Poitier and Harry Belafonte narrate William Greaves' NATIONTIME, returning in a new 4K restorati…
RT' @BAMfilmBrooklyn': Considered too militant for television broadcast, and previously only available in an edited 58-minute version, Willia…
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RT' @TheFilmStage': "Look at Brexit, Salvini in Italy, or Trump in the US. They’re monsters... We have completely eroded all kinds of social…
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