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American Violet

(No longer in theaters)
  • Rating: PG-13 — for thematic material, violence, drug references and language
  • Director: Tim Disney   Cast: Nicole Beharie, Alfre Woodard, Charles Dutton, Tim Blake Nelson, Will Patton
  • Running Time: 103 minutes
  • Reader Rating: Write a Review

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Bill Haney


Samuel Goldwyn Films

Release Date

Apr 17, 2009

Release Notes


Official Website


If you’re in the mood for a liberal message movie in which the only surprise is no surprise, American Violet is the ticket. I was and liked it pretty well. In Texas, an African-American single mother (Nicole Beharie) is arrested in a drug raid. Innocent but helpless against a racist system, she can plead and live her life as a felon or fight and go to prison. Fortunately, an ACLU lawyer (Tim Blake Nelson) persuades her to sue the zealous district attorney (Michael O’Keefe); unfortunately, his name is Cohen. So he taps an ex-narc turned defense attorney to put a Christian face on the case. You can laugh at American Violet, but most defendants are scared into pleading guilty and need all the poster girls they can get.