Scott Saltzman
Lisa Schwarzbaum
April 15, 2009 AT 04:00 AM EDT

American Violet

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
PG-13
runtime
102 minutes
Wide Release Date
04/17/09
performer
Nicole Beharie, Michael O'Keefe, Will Patton, Alfre Woodard
director
Tim Disney
distributor
Samuel Goldwyn Films
author
Bill Haney
genre
Drama

We gave it a B+

An artlessly powerful performance by newcomer Nicole Behaire anchors American Violet, an instructive, sturdily built drama based on a true story worth teaching: In 2001, an African-American single mother in Texas is falsely accused of drug-dealing during a housing-project raid. Pressured to plead guilty in a plea bargain by a racist District Attorney (O?Keefe), she chooses instead to file a discrimination suit with support from a northerner ACLU lawyer (Nelson) and a local lawyer (Patton). Here’s a case of activist screenwriting where didacticism in the defense of justice is no vice. B+

See all current movie reviews from EW

You May Like

Comments

EDIT POST