Sunday, September 25, 2016
1012 C Street  •  Floresville, TX 78114  •  Phone: 830-216-4519  •  Fax: 830-393-3219  • 

WCN Site Search


Preview the Paper Preview the Paper

Preview this week's Paper
A limited number of pages are displayed in this preview.
Preview this Week’s Issue ›
Subscribe Today ›

Lost & Found

Lost at LV Light It Up Ceremony: heart charm bracelet, necklace with arrow & heart, crown ring, and heart knot ring. All pieces are silver. Please contact Sheri, 210-833-8377.
Our beloved Gracie is missing, Dachshund/Lab mix, microchipped, about 30 pounds, black with little white. Call with any information, 830-393-9999 or 419-250-9099.
Lost at LV Light It Up Ceremony: heart charm bracelet, necklace with arrow & heart, crown ring, and heart knot ring. All pieces are silver. Please contact Sheri, 210-833-8377.
More Lost & Found ads ›

Help Wanted

Landscape laborers needed, must have transportation to and from work, must be willing to work. Start today! Call 830-534-2903.
Smartt Move LLC now hiring CDL drivers, hourly pay, day work, benefits, insurance, etc. Call George 972-365-6326 or Todd 210-296-6272.
More Help Wanted ads ›

Featured Videos





Video Vault ›

South Texas Living


The Butler


The Butler


E-Mail this Story to a Friend
Print this Story
Neil Pond
American Profile
September 11, 2013
3,205 views
2 comments

Stirring civil rights tale soars across nine decades of American history

Starring Forest Whitaker & Oprah Winfrey
Directed by Lee Daniels
PG-13, 132 min.

A sprawling sweep across nine decades of American history, this star-studded, heart-tugging and ultimately soaring tale filters the civil rights movement, Vietnam and other major events through the prism of a White House butler serving a parade of U.S. presidents.

Forest Whitaker is rock-solid as Cecil Gaines, whose improbable trek from Georgia cotton fields to the hallowed hallways of the nation’s highest office is a fictionalized drama loosely based on a real-life story. Screenwriter Danny Strong was inspired after reading a newspaper story about Eugene Allen, a black man who worked for the White House for 34 years before retiring as its head butler in 1986.

The movie is officially “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” because of a licensing conflict with another movie studio, which prohibited its intended title of “The Butler.” That’s how the director’s name became hitched to it at the last minute.

Daniels and Strong take a bit of dramatic license with their story as it barrels along across the years, and the miles. Much of it is to tremendous emotional effect, especially as young Cecil (played by Michael Rainey Jr.) watches the abuse of his mother (singer Mariah Carey) and the murder of his father (David Banner) by a loathsome young plantation squire (Alex Pettyfer), and later becomes trained as an indoor servant by the estate’s matriarch (Vanessa Redgrave).

As a teenager, Gaines finds a fancy job at a big-city hotel, then goes to Washington, D.C., for an even fancier job at an even fancier hotel. He marries, starts a family, and ultimately gets cherry-picked for a position on the wait staff for the White House in the late 1950s.

There, observing the mantra from his supervisor that “you see nothing, you hear nothing, you only serve,” he begins his long tenure attending the administrations of Presidents Eisenhower (Robin Williams), Kennedy (James Marsden), Johnson (Liev Schreiber), Nixon (John Cusack) and Reagan (Alan Rickman).

Perhaps Presidents Ford and Carter were skipped because the movie was already running over two hours long without them.

Or maybe there were simply no more actors available because the large cast had already drained Hollywood’s talent pool nearly dry. There’s Oprah Winfrey, doing an outstanding, Oscar-baiting turn as Cecil’s wife, loving but neglected as her husband gives his all to his job. Singer Lenny Kravitz and Cuba Gooding Jr. play fellow Oval Office butlers.

Terrence Howard is slimy-good as a lecherous next-door-neighbor who tries to take advantage of Mrs. Gaines during Cecil’s long absences away from home. Elijah Kelley (“Hairspray,” “Red Tails”) and David Oyelowo (“Lincoln,” “Jack Reacher”) are both strong as Cecil’s teenage sons, one drawn to serve his country in Vietnam, the other to more radical courses of action.

And hey, look---it’s Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan!

Released to coincide with the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King’s iconic “I Have a Dream” speech, the movie stirringly parallels its passionate message about racial harmony with Cecil’s more personal struggles with his own life, job and family.

Some of the scenes are wrenching to watch, like the one that cuts back and forth between a dignified formal White House dinner and a drug-store lunch-counter “sit-in” in the South at which Cecil’s son, and the other protesters, are jeered, spat upon, beaten, burned with steaming coffee and then hauled away to jail.

The intercut newsreel footage reminds us that the scene the movie depicts, and others like it, really happened. And Cecil’s story, in its dramatized arc of one man’s long, arduous but finally glorious and transformative journey across time, reminds us of just how far America has come in seeing what was once a dream becoming a reality.
 

Your Opinions and Comments

 
New Guy  
Wilson County  
September 13, 2013 11:13pm
 
Linda: did you watch it?

 
Linda Willis-Riojas  
Somerset, TX  
September 13, 2013 9:42pm
 
'Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan' I WAS going to watch the film, but some of the far left actors, including 'Hanoi Hilton Jane' as Nancy Reagan,' has ruined the entire movie for me. Some of these actors are so far left that ... More ›

Share your comment or opinion on this story!


You must be logged in to post a comment.




Not a subscriber?
Subscriber, but no password?
Forgot password?

South Texas Living Archives


Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Apple Pie readers help Julia fill in the blanks (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Cheap cell phone plans for seniors (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Come And Take It starts Sept. 30 (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Disc water pitcher (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. DRT chapter plans meeting, new member class (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Get ready to grill at show barn’s barbecue cook-off (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Old Town Day seeks vendors (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Poth VFD to serve up barbecued chicken (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Run and shine at Neon Sizzle 5K (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Spots open for Community Yard Sale (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. St. Mary’s Fall Festival Sept. 25 (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Support FUMC youth at barbecue ‘fun’ raiser (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Teen MOPS plans upcoming meetings (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. The root of many evils (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Uncovering local legends: The grave in the middle of the road (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. URBAN-15 seeks dancers, drummers (September 21, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Chicago Cub yearbooks (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Enjoy Country Music Show Sept. 20 (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. How to prevent falls at home (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Krawietz family reunion (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. La Vernia EMS plans Car Show (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Labatt Club donates to library, children (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Low voices and high hopes (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Lutheran Church plans Sausage Dinner (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Medicaid covers mosquito repellent to fight Zika (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Metting family plans reunion (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Non-prescription drugs — the forgotten solution to rising health-care costs (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Relay For Life meeting is Sept. 15 (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Seguin Cowboy Gathering is Sept. 17 (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Smith Gas celebrates 88 years in business (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. The life of Doris Billimek Moczygemba (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Trail ride donations surpass $1M (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Visit Remembering Our Fallen exhibit in Seguin (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Who will take care of you? (September 14, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. A life shaped by hard work and hunting (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. After-Dinner Chocolates (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Cajun music Sept. 10 (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Donate hearing aids, glasses, equipment (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Earn a certification in native landscaping (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Enjoy EquestFest 2016 (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Getting Engaged? How to spend wisely (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Mystery box (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Nominate a nonprofit for Literacy Award (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Old medicine chest dates back to 1821 (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Professional bull riding returns to Fredericksburg (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Register to run for tacos Oct. 1 (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Road Runners plan September outings (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Still time to buy tickets for Wild Game Dinner (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Take a tour of SS museum Sept. 17 (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Take the H-E-B Slim Down challenge (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Vote for top flick at Manhattan Short Film Festival (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Welcome to The Greenline, a 43-acre linear park (September 7, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. ‘Cupping’ long before Phelps did it (September 7, 2016)
WCN Photo Contest HHF
WWII Clippings HHF
Coupon Q&A HHF-right
coupon home-rght
Voncille Bielefeld homeFriesenhahn Custom WeldingAllstate & McBride RealtyHeavenly Touch homeTriple R DC Experts

  Copyright © 2007-2016 Wilson County News. All rights reserved. Web development by Drewa Designs.