With political and racial tensions currently on the rise in the fraught political climate, it becomes easy to think that America is the midst of a regression. The reality is that we’re not too far removed from the horrors of segregation. Now we’re entering an area where the stories of the past are being told today as an artistic appeal to our better angels. The latest such movie is the upcoming drama from director Robin Bissell, The Best of Enemies, which tells the true story of civil rights activist Ann Atwater (Taraji P. Henson) and local Ku Klux Klan president C.P. Ellis (Sam Rockwell) and their unlikely union in creating a summit on school segregation in 1971.
STX Entertainment will be releasing The Best of Enemies into theaters nationwide on April 5, 2019. This is one of those movies that could go either way. It could be lively, passionate story about unlikely alliances that are forged to make a better tomorrow. It’s also entirely possible that it’ll be a sanctimonious lecture about how we’re supposed to reach out to those who hate us. The first trailer for The Best of Enemies doesn’t give us too much information as to which way the film might swing on this pendulum of social commentary but the fact that it features Sam Rockwell and Taraji P. Henson is enough to grab my attention.
Co-starring alongside the two headlining stars are a strong cast of supporting actors including Babou Ceesay, Anne Heche, Wes Bentley, Nick Searcy, John Gallagher, Jr., and Bruce McGill. We’ll see if the past can inform the present when The Best of Enemies opens in theaters on April 5, 2019.
The official synopsis for The Best of Enemies:
Based on a true story, THE BEST OF ENEMIES centers on the unlikely relationship between Ann Atwater (Henson), an outspoken civil rights activist, and C.P. Ellis (Rockwell), a local Ku Klux Klan leader who reluctantly co-chaired a community summit, battling over the desegregation of schools in Durham, North Carolina during the racially-charged summer of 1971. The incredible events that unfolded would change Durham and the lives of Atwater and Ellis forever.