White Man's Burden (1995)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Message Movie, Americana, Crime Drama  |   Release Date - Dec 1, 1995 (USA)  |   Run Time - 90 min.  |   Countries - France , United States   |   MPAA Rating - R
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Synopsis by Michael Betzold

From director-writer Desmond Nakano comes this unusual role-reversal picture examining racism from a different perspective. Louis Pinnock (John Travolta) is a semi-literate worker in a chocolate candy factory. One day he makes a delivery to the mansion of wealthy Thaddeus Thomas (Harry Belafonte). He is noticed while he is unintentionally looking up at Thomas' wife, Megan (Margaret Avery), while she is undressing in an open window. Thomas makes sure that Pinnock is fired for this innocent indiscretion despite his years of reliable performance at the factory. Some time later, unemployed and destitute, Pinnock and his wife Marsha (Kelly Lynch) and children are evicted roughly from their home by police officers. Marsha's mother (Carrie Snodgress) takes in her daughter and grandchildren, but she won't let Pinnock stay. Police officers beat up Pinnock one day because, they say, he fits the description of a criminal suspect. Finally, Pinnock goes to Thomas's house to get an explanation for his firing, but Thomas doesn't remember the incident. Pinnock takes Thomas hostage and demands he be paid for all the hours of work he has missed. In this film, all the authority figures and wealthy people are black, and Pinnock is a member of a poor white underclass.




Black [race], class [social], conflict, cross-cultural-relations, estate, eviction, factory, homelessness, kidnapping, revenge, role-switching, unemployment