Black Film Classics | A Soldier’s Story

13 03 2009

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25 years ago, a talented ensemble of actors created a classic piece of cinema, “A Soldier’s Story, that resonates with as much power today as when it was first released in 1984. In an orbit of talented stars, veteran Adolph Caeser’s searing performance was the center of this powerful drama.

The late actor received an Best Supporting Actor nomination for his dynamic performance of forward-thinking hardened Army sergeant who is at the heart of the investigation conducted by African-American Captain Davenport (Howard Rollins, Jr.) into the death of Sgt. Waters (Caesar). Though small in stature, Caesar overcame his size with a imposing gruff baritone voice that was intimidating as it was authoritative.

Surrounded by fellow Oscar nominee Rollins and future Oscar winner Denzel Washington, Caesar permantely etched his name in cinematic lore with his balls-to-the-walls fiery passion. Just two years later, Caesar would suffer a massive heart attack and die on the set of “Tough Guys” at the age of 52, ending a career that appeared was just about to sail into orbit.

Directed by Norman Jewison, “A Soldier’s Story” starred David Alan Grier, Robert Townsend, the late Larry Riley, as well as Washington, Rollins and Caesar. To this day, one of our favorite films and a recent reminder of how timing is everything in film. Just think how heralded this film would be if it were released today?

**To watch some clips of Caesar’s amazing performance, click on the image above.**

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