THE LAST WHITE KNIGHT
Dir. Paul Saltzman (78min, Canada/USA, 2012).
“Without ever shying from the brutality of racial hatred, Saltzman’s first-person inquiry into the human face of intolerance… is bracing for its conviction in the power of simple human contact." –The Globe and Mail
Paul Saltzman’s courageous film is inspired by an incident during the early 1960s when he – a young, Jewish, civil rights activist – journeyed to the Deep South to help with voter registration in Mississippi. One of the first days he was there he was assaulted by a group of young men led by Byron “Delay” De La Beckwith, the son of the man convicted of killing civil rights activist Medgar Evers.
Decades later, Saltzman returns to the south to meet with Beckwith and see what, if anything, has changed in the New South. He interviews a wide variety of people from Harry Belafonte, the celebrated singer and civil rights activist, who recounts his own experiences during the voter registration drive; actor Morgan Freeman (who was born, and now lives, in Mississippi); a top FBI official, who discuss the close links between the police and the Klan during the period; to a group of kids from different races who are best friends; and (chillingly) a trio of dedicated, unregenerate Klansmen.