Daughters of the Dust (1991) - Rotten Tomatoes

Daughters of the Dust (1991)

Daughters of the Dust (1991)

Daughters of the Dust




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Daughters of the Dust Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

At the turn of the century, West African slaves were brought to a small island near South Carolina to labor in the indigo trade. Isolated in the swampy atmosphere, the Gullah community was built based on ancient Yoruba traditions. They spoke in a distinct dialect, a combination of English and West African languages. This unique community is explored in Julie Dash's debut feature Daughters of the Dust, a costume drama about the Peazant family, a fictional group of Gullah natives living on Ido Landing. The secluded family experiences conflicts surrounding religion, industrialization, and tradition. The mystical matriarch Nana (Cora Lee Day) holds true to the beliefs of their anscestors, while Haagar (Kaycee Moore) can't wait to move away. Yellow Mary (Barbara O) returns from a life as a prostitute in Cuba with her girlfriend, and gets morally attacked by the reformed Christian Viola (Cheryl Lynn Bruce). Meanwhile, indifferent Eula (Alva Rogers) is pregnant with a baby that may or may not be the result of a rape. While the story doesn't attempt to follow a standard Eurocentric narrative, the plot revolves around a picnic on the shore in honor of the family members who chose to move to the prosperity of the north. The narrator is a spirit called the Unborn Child, who appears sometimes as a rambunctious little girl. A photographer accompanies the group to capture the events on film.more
Rating: PG
Genre: Drama, Romance
Directed By:
Written By: Julie Dash
In Theaters:
On DVD: Feb 15, 2000
Kino International

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Barbara O
as Yellow Mary
Trula M. Marcus
as Companion
Geraldine Dunston
as Viola's Mother
Vertamae Grosvenor
as Hairbraider
Catherine Tarver
as Woman with Baby
Kai Lynn Warren
as The Unborn Child
Malik Farrakhan
as Newlywed Man
Sherry Jackson
as Older Cousin
Ervin Green
as Baptist Minister
Althea Lang
as Newlywed Woman
Dalisia Robinson
as Peazant Baby
Willie Faulkner
as Peazant Man
Joe Taylor
as Peazant Man
Frank Brown
as Peazant Man
Rueben Fripp
as Peazant Man
Derrick Coaxum
as Peazant Boy
Neil Howard
as Peazant Boy
Jared Warren
as Peazant Child
Zenovia Green
as Peazant Child
Taira Miller
as Peazant Child
Tiffanye Hills
as Peazant Child
Vivian Dawson
as Rice Husker
Inez Griffin
as Rice Husker
M. Cochise Anderson
as St. Julen Lastchild
Darrel Cook
as Moss Gatherer
Julius Cook
as Moss Gatherer
Benjamin Gillens
as Minister's Assistant
Ronald Daise
as Processional Man
Marie Smalls
as Woman Being Baptizie...
Lonnie Moon
as Baptismal Procession...
Dewitt Parker
as Baptismal Procession...
Emma Robinson
as Baptismal Procession...
Taylor Thompson
as Baptismal Procession...
Virginia Green
as Baptismal Procession...
Maceo Griffin
as Baptismal Procession...
Archie Thomas
as Baptismal Procession...
Raymond Paige
as Baptismal Procession...
Ervena Falkner
as Baptismal Procession...
J.R. Wilson
as Baptismal Procession...
Wilhemina Wilson
as Baptismal Procession...
Tarell Brown
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Shanna Parker
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Belle White
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Stanley White
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Maxine Royale
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Georgia Wiggins
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Carolyn Garris
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Ella Powell
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Bernice Jenkins
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Lilian Johnson
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Jackie Parker
as Indigo Plantation Wo...
Sharria Johnson
as Young Nana Peazant
Leroy Simmons Jr.
as Young Daddy Mac
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Daughters of the Dust

Critic Reviews for Daughters of the Dust

All Critics (12) | Top Critics (5)

The resources of the beautiful locations are exploited to the utmost, and [director Julie] Dash can be credited with an original, daring, and sincere conception.

Full Review… | February 9, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 26, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Washington Post
Top Critic

Centering on African-American women, Julie Dash's original feature was a highlight of indie cinema in the early 1990s.

Full Review… | April 7, 2011

Audience Reviews for Daughters of the Dust

A Top Ten Independent Film In My Book. Outstanding movie, a eye opener to some unkown history in the United States. Acting was incredable, Kino always has good productions. If you can find it buy it, Or Rent from Net Flix.

Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer

A very unique film and a valuable addition to the canon of great films on slavery.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer


Dealing extensively with ideas of the African disspora, Black culture and history, ancestoral guides and social differences, "Daughters of the Dust" is a contemplative and gorgeous piece of filmmaking that lulls it's audience into a relaxed and open state before revealing poignant truths.

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