Cry, The Beloved Country - * * * 1/2*

Moving portrait of 1940s South Africa and two of its men. James Earl Jones stars as a country priest who travels to Johannesburg to locate his lost relatives. However, he doesn’t find what he wishes. His sister has become a prostitute, and his son is accused of murdering a white man, a liberal dedicated to helping the South African blacks. Richard Harris plays the father of the murdered man, a wealthy man from the same region as Jones’ priest. Both men must question what they and their sons believed in, as each has to cope with the tragedy. Both actors give wonderful performances, but James Earl Jones stands out powerfully. He shows a man faced with troubles on all sides, but who uses them to make himself stronger. Richard Harris’ role might have been played harshly…but he shows several sides to his character, including a hopeful ability to change. Overall, this is a thoughful and poignant picture.

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