#ICYMI: Southern Movies

Over more than a century, mainstream movies have offered portrayals of the American South that range from the darkness of 1918’s Birth of a Nation to the fluffiness of 2002’s Sweet Home Alabama. Many Americans who have never visited the South (and know little to nothing about it) take their understanding of our complicated culture not from history books by Shelby Foote or C. Vann Woodward, but from the images, characters, and story lines in popular films, like Gone with the Wind, Forrest GumpThe Help, and Fried Green Tomatoes. (Personally, I don’t know anybody who ever killed and barbecued an abusive husband.) Whether they are set in the South, feature Southern characters, or both, movies feed and fuel how Americans view and treat the South, and also perpetuate and protect misinterpretations. Below is a list of Southern Movie posts. Just click on the title to read:

Straw Dogs (2013) • tick . . . tick . . . tick . . . (1970)

Intruder in the Dust (1949) • Black Snake Moan (2006)

The Black Klansman (1966) • Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958)

Way Down South (1939) • The Waterboy (1998)

Greased Lightning (1977) • The Green Pastures (1936)

The Southerner (1945) • Down by Law (1986)

In the Heat of the Night (1967) • The Phenix City Story (1955)

The Children’s Hour (1961) • Lemora: A Child’s Tale of the Supernatural (1973)

Norma Rae (1979) • Walking Tall (1973) • Radio (2003)

 Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (1997)

Sounder (1972) • Sophie and the Rising Sun (2017)

Mud Bound (2017) • Ode to Billy Joe (1976)

Black Like Me (1964) • Shy People (1987) • Slaves (1969)

Moonshine County Express (1977) • Angel Heart (1987)

Wise Blood (1979) • Baby Doll (1956) • Preacherman (1971)

Southern Comfort (1981) • White Lightning (1973)

Drums in the Deep South (1951) • Paris Trout (1991)

Hot Summer in Barefoot County (1974) • Free State of Jones (2016)

French Quarter (1978)

Coming: The Dynamiter (2011)


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