Vigis The New York Times. Please leja recipient e-mail address es. Cast Attributes Role s for Black Actor s. Two Black scavengers emerge from the underbrush loaded with their total possessions: Some features of WorldCat will not be available. Boesman and Lena a play in two acts. More like this Similar Items.

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Graham Weir. Recycle Man Anton Stoltz. A member of the Communist party of the USA, his was a feisty Americanism that permitted no ethnic, racial, or class prejudice, and more than once, Berry defended that creed with his fists.

Yet, at the end of it all, he was able to leave behind a unique testament to his beliefs. That testament is his final film, Boesman and Lena. Berry took part in a unique experiment at Paramount Stuios, in which he was part of a "directors in training" program, with the opportunity to observe none other than Billy Wilder at work on the set of Double Indemnity. But Garfield died of a heart attack just after production, his health ruined by anxiety over the investigations of Hollywood political affiliations by the House Committee on Unamerican Activities.

HUAC , and for Berry, it was a portent. Berry left America to begin a life in Paris as a gypsy screenwriter and director. His American career seemed on the verge of a minor renaissance in after the independently made Claudine, a deeply sympathetic film about a Black garbageman and his family, miraculously found its audience. But it was not to be, and Berry reconciled himself to that most surreal of careers, that of the ex-blacklistee, frequently honored but seldom employed.

Boesman and Lena reunited him with two old colleagues, playwright Athol Fugard, and producer Pierre Rissient, and it turned out to be one of his very best films. An interviewer once asked Berry, "Where did you get your politics from?

Ironically, in his last project, Jack Berry would return to that memory. Boesman and Lena is the story of a "colored" mixed race, in South African apartheid terms who have been repeatedly dispossessed from various shantytowns near Capetown. They live on the pittance from recycling bottles, and argue bitterly over which of them is to blame for their reduced state. We watch as economics grind their relationship nearly to dust; flashbacks make our suffering more acute, because we know that these two once loved each other, and even once believed in a glowing future.

The arrival of a Xhosa tribesman, and the violence that ensues, brings the long-delayed final confrontation between these two. It is a clash we know must happen, if Boesman and Lena are each to regain their dignity, yet one we dread.

Getting the cooperation of socially-conscious stars Angela Bassett and Danny Glover gave the project an A-list imprimatur. Berry always loved to tell the story of the last months of his fellow Blacklistee, Dalton Trumbo. There sat Trumbo, in the bathtub of his house on Ives Avenue in Hollywod, banging out his last novel on a typewriter rigged on a board across the tub, laughing and drinking, proudly outrunning the cancer that already taken one lung and was sure to kill him.

Jack Berry died on November 29, , just after Boesman and Lena finished shooting, still able to piss in his own backyard.


Boesman and Lena



Boesman and Lena a play in two acts.


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