Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
USA, 1964. DuArt Film and Video, Nothing But a Man Company. Screenplay by Michael Roemer, Robert M. Young. Cinematography by Robert M. Young. Produced by Michael Roemer, Robert Rubin, Robert M. Young. Costume Design by Nancy Ruffing. Film Editing by Luke Bennett.
This wonderfully honest, low-budget film tells of an Alabama highway worker (Ivan Dixon) who falls in love with a preacher’s daughter (jazz singer Abbey Lincoln). He gives up his steady work to marry her and start a family in a new house with a new job, and at first things are going smoothly. When it does not work out economically, Dixon descends into a spiral of anger and abuse before being given the opportunity to set himself back on the right path. With subtle, affecting performances and rich dialogue, the film never overindulges itself in emotional histrionics but instead is a heartfelt look at the difficulties of relationships, plus captures the hardships of black life in the American south with rigidly painful detail.