Walter Lee Younger (Poitier) is a young man struggling with his station in life. Sharing a tiny apartment with his wife, son, sister and mother, he seems like an imprisoned man. Until, that is, the family gets an unexpected financial windfall...
Sidney Poitier ... Walter Lee Younger
Claudia McNeil ... Lena Younger
Ruby Dee ... Ruth Younger
Diana Sands ... Beneatha Younger
Ivan Dixon ... Asagai
John Fiedler ... Mark Lindner
Louis Gossett Jr. ... George Murchison (as Louis Gossett)
Stephen Perry ... Travis Younger
Joel Fluellen ... Bobo
Louis Terrel ... Herman
Roy Glenn ... Willie Harris
Some stories leave you shattered. They speak to you on such a level and you identify with such intensity that by the end of the film, your nerves and emotion are raw.
Is Raisin in the Sun a play about racial prejudice? Yes indeed, an important one too. No story illustrates the ignorance of \'restricted neighborhoods\' better. No film offers the ugliness of white arrogance and presumption, something that still lives and breathes in this country.
For me personally, this is also a movie about being a man.
This movie illustrates so well how men are composed. We honor the father, love the mother and protect the traditions that raised you. Mixed in with all of that and no less important, are our dreams and aspirations.
This movie teaches us, with immense power and clarity, that to be a man, to be a real man, you must never sell out your pride. Never. No matter how badly your dreams have been shattered, your pride and your manhood belong to no one. Simple, basic redemption lies within that truth.
It\'s an important lesson, a deep lesson, that men of today (including myself) need to remind themselves of from time to time. There is a pride within all men. It can be stubborn, it can be arrogant and it can be so full of dreams that it can lead to bitter heartbreak. But it is there, burning in all men and it\'s our most treasured asset.
I can\'t think of a contemporary play that illustrates more strongly, the struggle and rites of manhood in American culture today. How ironic and perhaps appropriate that the film is written by a woman. It is after all the women in this film who patiently wait for Walter to find himself. The love, faith and patience of the women in this film, illustrate the grace, power and importance women have in all our lives, regardless of our gender. A Raisin in the Sun, is a marvelous film and brilliant play. It is, from my perspective, an American classic and I believe one of the most underrated American plays of all time. I recommend it to any man that is struggling to find themselves or trying to recapture what is real and what is untouchable within our souls and within our dreams.
\"A Raisin in the Sun\" is one of the finest American films ever made. This film discusses many vital issues, such as racism, abortion, trust, family values, greed, and even atheism.
My favorite character in this film is matriarch Lena Younger, impeccably performed by Claudia McNeil. Mrs. Younger is a wise, loving mother and grandmother to her family. While she may not always agree with her children\'s decisions, she never stops loving them.
Sidney Poitier is brilliant as the defeated Walter Lee Younger. Walter is frustrated with his job as a chauffeur, and believes he has more to offer the world.
Ruby Dee is great as Walter\'s supportive and level headed wife.
The dialogue and issues that are discussed reinstate the values upon which America was built. I strongly recommend this excellent film.
Lorraine Hansberry\'s screen adaptation of her own stage play is a powerful depiction of a black family\'s attempts to drag itself out of the ghetto with the aid of a $10,000 insurance pay-out following the death of the father. However, instead of providing the answer to their problems, it creates a new set that threatens to tear them apart.
Sidney Poitier got himself noticed with this flick, and it\'s not hard to see why. While it wasn\'t his breakthrough movie – he\'d been around for years, and had co-starred with Curtis in The Defiant Ones a couple of years before – it was the film that led to him obtaining starring roles rather than supporting ones. He brings an exuberance to the screen here that few actors can match, and stalks the cramped set like a panther as he rages against his lot in life. His isn\'t a likable character, and yet it\'s a measure of Poitier\'s talent that, even though he tends to overact at times, he still manages to make the character a sympathetic one. Claudia McNeil, reprising her stage role, vies with Poitier for domination of the screen at times, but it is a contest that benefits the film rather than creating conflict, and both Ruby Dee as Poitier\'s long-suffering wife and the ill-fated Diana Sands as his feisty sister are overshadowed by the principle actors\' performances.
Films like this require a level of compromise on the part of the viewer than doesn\'t come easy to me. While the film itself is undeniably powerful and the rare quality of the writing can\'t be faulted, the relentless emoting and dramatic expression of deceptively complex themes and ideas begin to wear one down after a while. By their very nature they can only fail to be representative of the people they depict because the ideas expressed are rarely more than passing observations to those who do not devote the deep thought to such matters that are necessary for the creation of such a literate piece of work. In fact, praise of the writing in a play/film like this is a double-edged sword when you think about it: the \'real\' people represented by the Youngers may feel trapped in the same way as Hansberry\'s characters, but it\'s unlikely that they would be able to articulate their feelings in the way the Youngers do. In this sense then, such films are unrealistic, and too often the ultimate nobility of the characters – as witnessed in the concluding scenes in A Raisin In The Sun – fails to ring true. There are few people who would have not taken the white racist\'s money when faced with the hardship that the Youngers are about to endure, and it would be the easiest thing in the world for anyone to convincingly justify such an act. Perhaps that\'s simply a sign of the changing times, but something tells me otherwise, and for that reason, Walter\'s change of heart fails to convince. But then if he didn\'t have a change of heart, what kind of film – and message – would we be left with?