Ghosts Of Mississippi

A bracing corrective to the provigilante stances and crude caricatures of Mississippi Burning and A Time to Kill, this conscientious and moving 1996 docudrama about the struggle three decades later to convict the assassin of NAACP activist Medgar Evers in Jackson, Mississippi, may err at times by overidealizing its principal heroes (Alec Baldwin and Whoopi Goldberg). But as directed by Rob Reiner from a script by Lewis Colick, it offers the most decent and convincing portrait of the contemporary south I’ve seen in ages (apart from Sling Blade). A first-rate secondary cast ranging from James Woods as the assassin to Bill Cobbs as Evers’s disc jockey brotherand also including Craig T. Nelson and William H. Macy as well as some Jackson localscontributes to the ring of truth, and the story held me throughout. (JR)

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