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Parents' Guide to

Always in Season

By Tara McNamara, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Lynching docu is chilling but effective; horrifying images.

Movie NR 2019 89 minutes
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Jacqueline Olive's piercing documentary about lynching in America is difficult but important to watch, especially because of its modern-day relevance. Many people would probably rather believe that lynching doesn't still exist, but Olive builds her case that it definitely does as she takes us through Lacy's story. While common sense observation indicates he was murdered, police instantly call the death a suicide and go so far as to obstruct their own evidence collection. In fact, the white members of the community generally seem to look the other way, including the town newspaper editor who shrugs that the staff is too busy to do any investigative journalism.

As Olive conducts her own probe into Lacy's death, Always in Season weaves insights into the socioeconomic origins of lynchings as a message crime and the generational trauma it created. A third thread turns the spotlight on a group who stages an annual reenactment of America's last documented, unsolved mass lynching: the 1946 incident at Moore's Bridge that took the life of two World War II veterans and their wives, one of whom was seven months pregnant. The film is more journalism than activism -- but while there's no direct call to action, the presentation of facts screams for itself. The acts of hate captured here are so revolting and inhumane that simply documenting their ongoing existence may be compelling enough to spark change.

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