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Film Review

By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat

 

Not In This Town
Directed by Donald Wrye
Universal 05/98 DVD/VHS Feature Film
PG-13 - thematic elements including depiction of hate crime

Tammy Schnitzer (Kathy Baker) lives with her husband (Adam Arkin), a Jewish physician, and their two children in Billings, Montana. As a convert from Lutheranism, she attends synagogue regularly. Tammy is angered by the hate literature she finds on her car after worship. A Native American's house is covered with graffiti, and members of a black church are intimidated by some angry youths. The chief of police learns that all these incidents are the work of local white supremacists led by an outside agitator (Ed Begley, Jr.). When they desecrate a Jewish cemetery where Tammy's son is buried, she decides to rally the community against those who spread hate.

Based on a true story, Not In This Town is directed by Donald Wrye. This drama vividly depicts how white supremacists want to eliminate all diversity. The only antidote to the hostile imagination is the moral imagination. Tammy proclaims her solidarity with all the citizens of Billings in a television speech. Her respect for differences enables her to reverence the oneness of all life. Not In This Town makes a good case for civic activism and for interfaith cooperation in the continuing challenge to move people beyond hate.

 

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Reviews and database copyright 1970 2012
by Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
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