The Reel Review

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After her 14-year-old son Emmett Till is tortured and murdered in a brutal 1955 lynching while visiting his cousins in Mississippi, his mother vows to expose the racism behind the horrendous attack and bring his killers to justice, in this historical drama starring Danielle Deadwyler (Paradise Lost, The Harder They Fall), Jalyn Hall and Whoopi Goldberg.

Jalyn Hall in Till

Told with unflinching honesty, co-writer/director Chinonye Chukwu lands a powerful gut punch, retelling the horrific events that helped spark the civil rights movement when the boy’s mother, Mamie Till-Mobley, insists on a public, open-casket funeral to show the world the brutal violence that was carried out against her son. It is devastating and shocking – a horrific spotlight on the disgusting lack of justice for Black Americans.

Danielle Deadwyler in Till

Danielle Deadwyler delivers a deeply emotional, career-defining, Oscar-worthy performance as the boy’s incredibly courageous mother. She is simply phenomenal. While at times hard to watch, Till is a critical piece of history that every American should see – a powerful, thought-provoking film.

REEL FACTS

Left: Emmett Till in a photo taken by his mother on Christmas Day in 1954, and right: Till’s mother Mamie and her fiance Gene Mobley in the open casket funeral photo which helped spark the civil rights movement.

• 67 years after his brutal murder, The Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act, a U.S. law which makes lynching a federal hate crime, was signed into law on March 29, 2022 by President Joe Biden.

• Whoopi Goldberg played the wife of slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers in the 1996 historical drama, Ghosts of Mississippi. 

Till was filmed on location in Greenwood, Mississippi and in Atlanta, Georgia, which is also the hometown of its star, Danielle Deadwyler.

 

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