7.8/10
73,314
189 user 56 critic

Mississippi Burning (1988)

Trailer
1:34 | Trailer

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Two F.B.I. Agents, with wildly different styles, arrive in Mississippi to investigate the disappearance of some civil rights activists.

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Writer:

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Popularity
2,945 ( 76)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 16 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Anderson
... Ward
... Mrs. Pell
... Deputy Pell
... Mayor Tilman
... Sheriff Stuckey
... Townley
... Frank Bailey
... Lester Cowens
... Agent Monk
... Agent Bird
... Eulogist
Thomas B. Mason ... Judge (as Tom Mason)
... Goatee
Rick Zieff ... Passenger
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Storyline

Two FBI agents investigating the murder of civil rights workers during the 60s seek to breach the conspiracy of silence in a small Southern town where segregation divides black and white. The younger agent trained in FBI school runs up against the small town ways of his former Sheriff partner. Written by Keith Loh <[email protected]>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

1964. When America was at war with itself.


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

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Release Date:

27 January 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Three Lives for Mississippi  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$225,034, 11 December 1988, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$34,603,943, 31 December 1989
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Color:

(DeLuxe)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At one point, Gene Hackman decided that he would no longer make more violent films, after seeing a brief and violent clip of his performance in this film (and taken out of context, he thought) at the 1989 Oscars. That stance prevented him from accepting a future job as director of The Silence of the Lambs (1991) and almost cost him the Sheriff role in Unforgiven (1992), which he reluctantly accepted after being convinced by Clint Eastwood, a role that earned great acclaim, and his second Oscar. See more »

Goofs

When Baines is trying to escape, Anderson blocks him at the doorway holding up a set of handcuffs with the thumb and forefinger of his left hand. In the next closer shot, he is dangling the handcuffs from his index finger. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Driver: Uh, oh.
Passenger: What is it?
Passenger: [seeing the car behind them] What do they want?
Driver: I don't know... just pass me... pass me...
Driver: [trying to identify the following car] Is it a cop?
Passenger: I can't see.
[they are hit from behind]
Driver: What the fuck are these jokers playin' at?
Rear passenger: Oh, they ain't playin', you better believe it.
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Timeless: Pilot (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Walk on by Faith
Words and Music by James Cleveland
Performed by Lannie Spann McBride
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Sometimes rules need to be broken 9/10
14 April 2002 | by See all my reviews

Alan Parker's Mississippi Burning is an unflinching look at racism in the South. This is a very difficult movie to watch, but it is well worth it, and a reminder of past events -- events that should never be forgotten. Gene Hackman gives a power-house of a performance, ripping up the screen in every scene. The film has a strong supporting cast as well, including the always dynamic Michael Rooker.

Many have complained about the death-wish like final act, but the final results are completely called for and necessary.


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