Review by School Library Journal Review
Gr 9 Up-Commemorating the 50th anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington, this moving documentary considers the seminal event from a more personal point of view. Using archival video footage and interviews with March organizers and participants, the film chronicles the United States of the late 1950s and early 1960s when segregation and violence against blacks was commonplace in the South. While most people think of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. as the face of the Civil Rights Movement, here viewers are introduced to A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin, who also advocated for nonviolent mass action and together orchestrated and organized the march. Through the three men's aides and assistants, viewers are given an intimate look at what took place behind the scenes, putting a human face on the milestone event. Director John Akomfrah successfully pieces together stories to create a narrative that celebrates perseverance and principles. Narrated by Denzel Washington, the film smartly allows the voices of the people involved to do the telling, relying on Washington only when the footage or personal anecdotes require context. The images are powerful, especially a video clip showing blacks and whites sharing the same drinking fountains at the DC demonstration. The distinct soundtrack, ranging from cool jazz to gospels to folk songs, further enhances the documentary. Inspirational and thought-provoking, this is a must for any library collection.-Audrey Sumser, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Mayfield, OH (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.