.

Rosewood

Ving Rhames, Jon Voigt, Don Cheadle, Ester Rolle, Michael Rooker

Directed by John Singleton
Rolling Stone: star rating
5 0
Community: star rating
5 0 0
April 11, 2001

Jon Voight and Ving Rhames give strong performances in this uneven but unmistakably earnest film set in Florida, in 1923. Voight plays John Wright, a white shopkeeper in the predominantly black town of Rosewood. Rhames takes the role of Mann, a World War I veteran who wants to settle in a town where blacks are prospering.

Trouble starts when Fannie Taylor (Catherine Kellner), a housewife in the neighboring white town of Sumner, claims that she was beaten and raped by a black stranger. Fannie's lie becomes an excuse for Sumner's residents to lynch blacks and burn Rosewood to the ground. It is John who helps Mann get a few black women and children to safety.

Amazingly, the story is based on fact. The tragedy of Rosewood was kept secret until the 1980s. TV's 60 Minutes helped to expose the truth and to pass a 1994 Florida bill giving reparations to the families of Rosewood survivors. Though Hollywood hyperbolizes the Gregory Poirier script — Mann is a fictional character — John Singleton (Boyz N the Hood) directs the film with riveting urgency. Split reaction to the O.J. Simpson verdicts is just one symptom of America's continuing racial divide. At its best, Rosewood touches a still-raw nerve.

prev
Movie Review Main Next

ADD A COMMENT

Community Guidelines »
loading comments

loading comments...

COMMENTS

Sort by:
    Read More

    Movie Reviews

    More Reviews »
    Daily Newsletter

    Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

    Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
    marketing partners.

    X

    We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

    Song Stories

    “Promiscuous”

    Nelly Furtado with Timbaland | 2006

    This club-oriented single featuring Timbaland, who produced Nelly Furtado's third album, Loose, was Furtado’s sexy return after the Canadian singer's exploration of her Portuguese heritage on Folklore. "In the studio, initially I didn’t know if I could do it, 'cause Timbaland wrote that chorus," Furtado said. "I'm like, 'That's cool, but I don't know if I'm ready to do full-out club.'" The flirty lyrics are a dance between a guy and girl, each knowing they will end up in bed together but still playing the game. "Tim and I called it 'The BlackBerry Song,' she said, "because everything we say in the song you could text-message to somebody."

    More Song Stories entries »
    www.expandtheroom.com