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Free State of Jones (2016)

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A disillusioned Confederate army deserter returns to Mississippi and leads a militia of fellow deserters and women in an uprising against the corrupt local Confederate government.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Serena
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Will Sumrall
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Elias Hood
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Lt. Barbour
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Davis Knight
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Mary / Yeoman Farmer
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James Eakins
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Annie
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Wilson
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Aunt Sally
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Storyline

Set during the Civil War, Free State of Jones tells the story of defiant Southern farmer, Newt Knight, and his extraordinary armed rebellion against the Confederacy. Banding together with other small farmers and local slaves, Knight launched an uprising that led Jones County, Mississippi to secede from the Confederacy, creating a Free State of Jones. Knight continued his struggle into Reconstruction, distinguishing him as a compelling, if controversial, figure of defiance long beyond the War. Written by STX Entertainment

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Based on the incredible true story.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for brutal battle scenes and disturbing graphic images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

| |  »

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

24 June 2016 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El valiente  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$7,572,206 (USA) (24 June 2016)

Gross:

$20,758,378 (USA) (22 July 2016)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Christopher Berry, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Lara Grice also appeared together in The Whole Truth (2016). See more »

Goofs

While showing Rachel how to shoot, Newton Knight refers to the front sight as a "BB." BB guns didn't exist until 1900. However, the name "BB" stands for "ball bearing", which were used for shotgun loads even before the Civil War, so this may have been accurate. In addition, "BB" is the name of the size of shotgun buckshot measuring .18 inches; again something that was in use at the time. See more »

Quotes

Newton Knight: These men are here to vote. They mind dying a whole lot less than you do.
See more »


Soundtracks

Finding Home
(uncredited)
by Nicholas Britell, Tim Fain & Rob Moose'
© (P) 2016 STX Recordings, LLC., under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertain
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Twizard Rating: 91
5 July 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

It's an interesting film to come out during the month of June. On the surface, it appears to be Oscar bait. But it has its fair share of issues. However, they shouldn't be enough to hinder any enjoyment of the film.

Amidst the impressive set pieces and Confederate South backdrop, Free State of Jones follows Newton Knight, played by Matthew McConaughey, a deserted soldier who starts an uprising against his former Confederate army. He leads a group of escaped slaves and runaway farm workers under the credo that no man shall be owned, and poor men should not be losing their lives so the rich can get richer.

It's a truly powerful film about freedom and an earnest man who believes in equality--even on a subconscious level. Yet, it's interesting to note that everything between Knight and his comrades is all good. There is a minor spat between him and four of his men, but it lasts all of about ten minutes of screen time. Other than that, there isn't much conflict within his rule.

There is, however, much outside hostility. That's the whole point of the movie. The action scenes are both eye-opening and jaw dropping. About as real as any Civil War film can be. And there are several scenes that are so lifelike that even the snootiest critic must acknowledge its integrity.

The script isn't perfect. Some potential nuances are left on the table. Certain inner struggles that Knight faces are sped through, when they would have significantly benefited the character's development. We don't catch enough inward glimpses. At times, the circumstances seem overcome too easily. And it's not McConaughey's fault. I'm not sure if I can imagine anyone else playing the part.

But the main story is told the right way. It serves its purpose as we come closer to understanding the struggle of the slaves and impoverished farmers. It's not just a fight for freedom, but for equality--which this movie proves may not always be the same thing.

At 139 minutes, it never feels long. By the end, you still feel like there should have been more.

Twizard Rating: 91


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