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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars On The Outside Looking In
This review refers to "White Man's Burden"(VHS)...

Fresh off his success as a take no prisoners hitman, in "Pulp Fiction", John Travolta steps into the shoes of another man with a gun, Louis Pinnock. Louis is your everyday factory worker, living from pay check to pay check to support his family. He lives in the inner-city, and hopes to someday get just a little...
Published on May 23, 2006 by L. Shirley

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Skewed Stereotypes
This movie takes a 180 degree turn on the stereotypes given to blacks and whites. In it, it is the blacks who are in control, educated, and well-spoken. The whites live in the slums, work the low wage jobs, and commit most of the crime. All the black cops are racist, all the black bosses look down on their white employees, and all the rich black people are snobby and...
Published on March 19, 2002 by EL


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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars On The Outside Looking In, May 23, 2006
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review refers to "White Man's Burden"(VHS)...

Fresh off his success as a take no prisoners hitman, in "Pulp Fiction", John Travolta steps into the shoes of another man with a gun, Louis Pinnock. Louis is your everyday factory worker, living from pay check to pay check to support his family. He lives in the inner-city, and hopes to someday get just a little ahead, so he can move his family to a quieter, safer place. He's about to have a really bad week!

Volunteering to run an errand, delivering a package to factory owner Thaddius Thomas (Harry Belafonte), Louis has the unfortunate timing to glance Belafonte's wife as she undresses, and worse, Thomas sees him. The next thing we know,circumstances go from bad to worse. Louis is out of a job, a home and his mind. Blaming his boss, he feels he is "owed" what he lost,and becomes a desperate man.He kidnaps Belafonte, from his very upscale home and car at gunpoint.

This film is a real eye-opener. You may think you understand what it is like for inner-city, black families(or any minority group)and feel empathetic, but this is a film that will really make you sit up and take notice.

The roles are reversed.Travolta's character and his family are treated very much like second or third class citizens.Police automatically assume guilt, and take whatever means they want to make an arrest. The inner-city is mostly inhabited by whites, and is portrayed as crime infested neighborhoods. A little white boy is watching TV, as he flips through the channels, almost every program and commercial are black actors. The little boy wants a super hero action toy for his birthday. The super hero is black and more expensive then the white side kick, but the little boy wont settle for less.An elegant fashion show is put on by the very wealthy. It is to benefit the inner-city kids. The kids are showcased at the end... they are all white... the audience dressed to the nines, all black.

The film doesn't completely say everything is either black or white. It shows there is good and bad in every walk of life,has a sprinkling of whites in jobs that yield some power, but gives a good look at what many people must endure as human beings in day-to day life. It's not just about color..it's about the nature of man. How will Belafonte's character react, when he becomes desperate to escape his situation as well? Does it matter what color you are when faced with adversity?

The cast really became the characters they portrayed. Travolta and Belafonte were excellent. A young Andrew Lawrence, Magaret Avery(The Color Purple)and Tom bower add their talents as well.Even the angry gang members, played by stunt guys including Tony Zeller were very believable. A film for times you may want a little more substance then just entertainment.

It is a film that will make you think.It is a film that has something to say. It says it well, but it is probably not one that would stand up to repeated viewings. A rental would be best if you can find this obscure film.....Laurie
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars White Man's Burden Review, March 20, 2002
This review is from: White Man's Burden (DVD)
Overall I thought the movie was great. Louis Pinnock (John Travolta) plays the role of a chocolate factory employee who has been working there for many years. He lives in a poor part of the neighborhood and awaits the day when he will get a raise so that he can provide for his family and get out of that area of town.
He gets a special assignment to deliver a package on the other side of the town to Thaddeus Thomas (Harry Belafonte). He inncidently see's Mrs. Thomas nude throw an upstairs window and the result is Louis getting fired for being a peeping tom. After being fired, Louis loses his wife and continously looks for a job with no luck.
Louis, who after being fired, flips out and goes on a rampage to track down Thaddeus who he blames for getting him fired. Louis takes Thaddeus hostage and attemps to convince him that he owes Louis something for getting him fired and turning his life upside down.
The movie is a role reversal type film where a white man lives in a black mans world. All the high paid jobs go to the African Americans and the slums of the neighborhood are of all Caucasian decent. Even the characters on tv are all black, and the children all want to have action figures of black culture. The film is meant to open your mind and expand your beliefs on what type of society black people deal with and have to put up with in their everyday lives.
I won't ruin the ending but overall its a movie worth watching. It's deals with racism and how it might be for a white man living in a black world. I, being a white guy, find it hard to grasp the reality of how hard it is for African Americans and this movie helped me to visualize this aspect to a better understanding.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A LESSER KNOWN POINT OF VIEW., August 7, 2000
By A Customer
This thought-provoking screenplay is brilliantly written as well as brilliantly acted by the entire cast -- and everyone involved should bust their buttons with pride over the end result.
I literally hollered out loud at the end. You think you have this movie all figured out and then you're hit in the head with a lead pipe full of reality.
If you agree or disagree with me, one thing is certain -- you will never forget this movie!
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Changes Your Thinking, May 8, 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: White Man's Burden (DVD)
I know some people have said that this movie doesn't take into consideration other minorities, but I think it is successful it achieving it's purpose. I am a white person and I was so moved by this movie. It's easy to be like the wife and say "oh, these poor inner-city kids are so cute" and help them out and feel like you're being compassionate, but I found myself feeling a little offended by her reaction. It was like a reality-check for me because it made me realize how I must come across to other people in my thinking. I think it's a powerful movie that everyone should watch. It may have focused on one minority, but I think if it really touches someone, they'll translate that toward other minorities. Excellent, thought-provoking, thought-changing movie! Well, done!!!! Thanks for doing it!!!
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I saw this movie in a different way them most reviewers, August 28, 2001
This review is from: White Man's Burden (DVD)
I admit, I love this movie. Combining Harry Belafonte with John Travolta is truely inspired. Both are excellent actors in their own right. And add to the fact that both are impassioned about messages, this makes it the perfect film vehicle for them to work together in. I see this movie as White Vs. Black, as much as upper class Vs. lower class. But the added change of race reversal makes it more fascinating. In this movie there are only two races, Black and White. Blacks are the powerful majority. They own the businesses, they are the actors you see on TV and in the movies, they are the ones that have super hero dolls made after them, they go on charity junkets with the "poor white kids", making themselves feel good by pretending to care and help. Behind closed doors, they talk about how the whites really do things to themselves. The whites in this movie are poor, uneducated, trying to avoid work, feel oppressed, and blame race for all of their problems. The occasional white character in power is a "token white", placed there to meet some kind of quota, not nessicarily because he deserved it. I think that this entire movie is based on role reversal, but it also points out that the problem is not race, as much as it is viewpoint. As long as people see themselves as oppressed, they will be oppressed. The true chains are in the mind, not in the color of the skin. As for the absence of Asian and Hispanic characters, this tells something also. All conversations of race in the US (outside of a few areas like California) talk ONLY about Black and White. There is no Jessie Jackson or Al Sharpton for the Asians and Hispanics. So to many people, these are the "Invisible Minorities". This was shown in this movie, because these other races did not exist at all. Because nobody stands up and screams for their rights, they are excluded from the movie, because of lower impact. This of course may be unintentional, but it seems to make sense to me. Think of the last time you saw a rally, demonstration, or public speaker talking about how Hispanics and Asians are stepped on. Name one Asian or Hispanic civil rights leader that makes headline news. But this movie is fascinating. Dark, compelling, and worth watching over and over again. Also good to show to people of any race, because it is hard to ignore the hidden truth, and also the lie that is an accepted truth. This was the second movie I bought on DVD, and still has a prominant place on my shelf.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect parallel RACE movie, January 7, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: White Man's Burden (DVD)
This movie is an entertaining movie, that has a plot line all of its own for a man losing everything and trying to survive and just by default of the movie Blacks are the one's in positions of power. I loved it and haven't seen another movie like it, and probably never will; which that in and of itself also says something.
The concept seems like it would have been done at least 100 times in America, but no it hasn't; and Travolta and Belafonte got it done right the first time. This movie deals with race in a way and perspective that often (silly enough and SADLY) only cartoons have the privilege of doing. Which is to erase people's biases on race and look at the characters all the while opening one self up to the possibility that this is relatable directly to racial issues without feeling like you are being preached to or watching some horrible tragedy that incriminates those of a different race and leaves them feeling embarrassed, harassed, or victimized themselves by a movie.

The person I bought the movie from is great also and shipped the movie quickly
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Skewed Stereotypes, March 19, 2002
By 
EL (Phoenix, AZ United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: White Man's Burden (DVD)
This movie takes a 180 degree turn on the stereotypes given to blacks and whites. In it, it is the blacks who are in control, educated, and well-spoken. The whites live in the slums, work the low wage jobs, and commit most of the crime. All the black cops are racist, all the black bosses look down on their white employees, and all the rich black people are snobby and superficial. All the poor whites are criminals, prideful and have over-nagging mother-in-laws. It was rather fascinating to see the various racial stereotypes turned on their heads; what better way to show us how rediculous such broad generalizations are than by giving them to groups who we never would have thought of in that way?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Reversal is Effective, June 20, 2001
By 
Allen H. Reid (Rochdale, MA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: White Man's Burden (DVD)
Life is always richer than drama. It's true this movie is simplistic. Watching a movie is an opportunity to approximate an experience not your own. You get to flesh it out as your mind expands on it later. For a white person who wants more on the black experience, here's something simple and direct that shows some of what it is like as an experience. It's also witty: there are little interactions you can watch, like the way the black cop dominates his white partner. And I do believe that the discussion of the relevance of criminal behavior to situation is appropriate. For anyone who likes their drama to leave them knowing a little more, this is a good movie. But it is a little simple.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie, March 24, 2002
This review is from: White Man's Burden (DVD)
White mans Burden is a film that addresses afro-caucasion relations in the United States. The ... roles of these respective races are reversed for the film. This forces an individual from either of these groups to view the racial positions from both perspectives. By doing this hopefully the viewer will be able to gain a better understanding of how societal conditions ... can lead to behavioral extremes.
The message contained within this movie can be applicable to racial tensions between any groups. The underlying message is that it is society that breeds behavior, not skin color.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Eye Opener, December 17, 2014
This review is from: White Man's Burden (DVD)
For me it was not so much the actual movie (acting, scenery, plotline, etc.), but the way it made me feel. I was compassionate but with no basis in this reality until I watched the movie. What an eye opener, I never want to feel that way again but I don't want to forget how it made me feel. For this I keep this movie on my top movies to see list along with The Human Stain, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, Sophie's Choice, There are a few more but they are pretty heavy movies on my list. You should watch I Love You to Death for some levity. Based on a true story it is funny!
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White Man's Burden
White Man's Burden by Desmond Nakano (DVD - 1999)
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