Nightjohn (1996) - Rotten Tomatoes

Nightjohn (1996)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Nightjohn Photos

Movie Info

Set in the South before the Civil War, when it was illegal for African Americans to be literate, this well-wrought made-for-television drama centers on Nightjohn (Carl Lumbly), a slave who risks his life to teach a younger slave, Sarny (Allison Jones) to read and write.
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Hallmark Entertainment

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Carl Lumbly
as Nightjohn
Beau Bridges
as Waller
Bill Cobbs
as Old Man
Kathleen York
as Callie Waller
Tom Nowicki
as Dr. Chamberlaine
Joel Thomas Traywick
as Jeffrey Waller
Monica Ford
as Egypt
Patty Mack
as Evelyn
Danny Nelson
as Reverend Rush
Gerald Brown
as Joseph
Robin McLamb-Vaughn
as Sarny's Mom
Alecia Gainey
as Sarny at 4
Steven Sutherland
as Alan Bowen
Shannon Eubanks
as Fanny Bowen
John P. Ford III
as Arthur Waller
John Herina
as Homer Waller
Jordan Williams
as James Waller
Bill Gribble
as Slave Trader
Bruce Evers
as Patroller No. 1
James Mayberry
as Patroller No. 2
Antwan Isaac
as Young Man
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Critic Reviews for Nightjohn

All Critics (2)

Powerful and soul-stirring drama set on a nineteenth century Southern plantation.

Full Review… | August 27, 2002
Spirituality and Practice

Audience Reviews for Nightjohn


Nightjohn is a very enjoyable film, that is quite underrated it seems. It's a shame few people seem to know about this great film since it has such an interesting story about a slave girl learning to read and also features great performances across the board from the cast. On top of having genuine touching moments, there are also surprising moments of funny humor. Nightjohn overall is an excellent, very underrated film that deserves a lot more attention.

Keenan Sullivan
Keenan Sullivan

Wonderful movie that brought to light the truths of why keeping slaves illiterate was so important to slave owners. Very touching story...chock full of some very good actors. Well done. Beau Bridges at his best.

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

Poignant,I found this Fascinating, slaves being punished for knowing how to read.Beau Bridges as Clel Waller was believably hateful.I cannot imagine how Slave Owners could justify not seeing their Slaves as Humans.This is yet another Film that I believe Teen School Kids should be Taught to learn Tolerance & History.

Marilee Aschwanden
Marilee Aschwanden

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