“The Best of Enemies” (STX)

Sam Rockwell, Babou Ceesay and Taraji P. Henson star in a scene from the movie "The Best of Enemies." The Catholic News Service classification is A-III -- adults. (CNS/STXfilms)

By Catholic News Service

Appealing fact-based drama, set in 1971 Durham, North Carolina, in which a no-nonsense civil rights activist (Taraji P. Henson) and the head of the local Ku Klux Klan (Sam Rockwell) are forced to spend time together as leading participants in an arbitration process (steered by Babou Ceesay) deciding the future of the city’s still-segregated schools. As a result, each gains insight into the other’s life and character with very positive ultimate consequences.

In adapting Osha Gray Davidson’s 1996 book, writer-director Robin Bissell evokes strong performances from a fine cast and promotes humane values in a film many parents may consider rewarding for older teens, especially given the role Christian faith plays in guiding the campaigner’s actions.

Some nongraphic violence, including gunplay and the threat of rape, an act of sexual aggression, a few uses of profanity and of crude and crass language, racial slurs. The Catholic News Service classification is A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

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