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Lalee's Kin: The Legacy of Cotton

4.7 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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(Jul 27, 2010)
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Editorial Reviews

For as long as she can remember, LaLee Wallace's family has picked cotton.

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Special Features

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Product Details

  • Directors: Susan Froemke and Deborah Dickson with Albert Maysles
  • Producers: Susan Froemke
  • Format: NTSC
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    G
    General Audience
  • Studio: HBO
  • DVD Release Date: July 27, 2010
  • Run Time: 89 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003VS09E0
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #51,040 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Lalee's Kin: The Legacy of Cotton" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Theatrical Release
This documentary is true to what everyone is saying - it shows a delta woman's struggle for survival in a harsh world. she can't read, she's poor and uneducated, but she has plenty of love to give around to her babies. lalee struck me because she is so genuine. she's got a big heart. she doesn't have much, but she is makes the best out of her situation, never blaming a soul. it makes you grateful for everything you have. after all, what do we know about driving into town just to get a jug of water so we can have a bath? what do we know about losing our home?
There are two stories displayed in the film. the first is the part about lalee, and the latter is about reggie barnes, a superintendent who is struggling to get the west tallahatchie school district up in levels to keep the state from taking over. his dedication to the children in the district is astounding. more schools need someone like him, who is willing to go the long run to help educate.
if you're looking for something real about the grittiness of the mississippi delta, this is for you.
also, i read an article on her about a year ago in my state capital's newspaper. since the documentary, many people have come by to bring her gifts or help fix up her house and such. i'm glad she was able to touch so many lives. she is an amazing woman.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I have waited for this video to be available for years at a reasonable price. Every University should have several copies of this movie. People all over the United States would be ashamed and astonished after watching this film. The first question that would be asked will be how many decades ago was this. The shame is that this is happening now where people have to walk miles to get water to take a bath or cook, or where the kids take turns going to school because they are sharing the same pencil or the same pair of pants. These are people who have real problems and need help in this country.$7 an Hour Ain't No Job: The Second Emancipation of the Black Race
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Format: Theatrical Release
It will bring tears to your eyes.
This film is powerful. No narration, just reality coming at you in your face, in your gut.
This is modern day Third World living in the United States of America that's happening right now. Not fifty years ago but RIGHT NOW.
If you don't look differently at that last CD you bought, or that latte' you had yesterday, you have a heart of stone.
If you say you care about anyone other than yourself and you don't choose to go into the world and DO SOMETHING after seeing this film, you may as well be dead. You can't be human and go back to life as usual after seeing this film.
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Format: DVD
This film covers a few different issues. Number one, it covers the struggle of an under-educated woman trying to make it by with very little money and too many kids. While this certainly tugs at the heartstrings, I think the second issue it portrays is far more important, although ultimately lost on some who will watch the film.

This film demonstrates the importance of parent(s) and/or tutor(s) in a child's education, outside of the classroom. If the parents are unable to help the child, funding for after-school help has been entirely cut, and class sizes are far too large for teachers to spend one-on-one time with students, the pupils are left to struggle and ultimately be left-behind. As the students continue to struggle later in life, ultimately graduating at the absolute minimum or dropping out, they will end up in a low-paying dead-end job if they're lucky, or end up in a life of crime, only to perpetuate the cycle to the next generation.

If you'd like the really see the importance of after-school programs, free tutoring, and/or cutting class sizes, not to mention proper funding for supplies, watch this film, you won't be disappointed.
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Format: Theatrical Release
I feel this movie is a very insightful and honest portrayal of African American heritage in the deep south, a heritage that has restricted them in terms of healthcare, education, employment, and social justice. The strength of the central character, LaLee Wallace, is touching and inspiring. Despite all the hardships she has endured for decades, she continues to love, care for, and nurture her struggling family, including her grandchildren. She teaches these grandchildren how to be the best they can be "for themselves." In one very poignant scene, she is deeply saddened by the telling of the story of how her son was killed in a car accident. As tears stream down her cheeks, she says "doesn't pay to love your children too hard." Equally inspiring are the principal and teachers in the poverty stricken schools that the children attend. They are a dynamic group of individuals, dedicated to improving the quality of the school and the education provided----communicating that they feel that these children are worth it, and that education is the only way to break the cycle of poverty, drop-out rates, teen pregnancy, and crime. They know they are confronting great odds, but feel a strong sense of responsiblility to the children and the community. I would highly recommend this video, and hope to use in my own graduate level classes on Diversity. It highlights the strength of the human spirit and the concept that "it takes a village to raise a child." We fall short in that area! Vera Gray
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