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Free State of Jones: A True Story of Rebellion and Freedom
Free State of Jones is a 2016 movie starring Matthew McConaughey as Newton Knight, a Confederate deserter who led a militia of fellow deserters and slaves in an uprising against the corrupt local government in Mississippi during the Civil War. The movie is based on a true story of how Knight and his followers declared their independence from the Confederacy and formed the Free State of Jones, a community that defied racial and social boundaries and fought for justice and equality.
The movie was directed by Gary Ross, who also wrote the screenplay and co-produced the film. The cast includes Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Rachel, a former slave and Knight's wife; Mahershala Ali as Moses, a freedman and leader of the voting rights movement; Keri Russell as Serena, Knight's first wife; and Christopher Berry as Jasper Collins, Knight's cousin and ally. The movie received mixed reviews from critics and audiences, who praised the performances and the historical accuracy, but criticized the length, the pacing, and the lack of focus.
Free State of Jones is a movie that explores a fascinating and overlooked chapter of American history, showing how ordinary people can rise up against oppression and injustice. It is a movie that challenges the myths and stereotypes of the Civil War era, and celebrates the courage and resilience of those who fought for freedom. If you are interested in watching this movie, you can find it on various streaming platforms such as Movies Anywhere[^2^].
Newton Knight was a man of strong convictions and principles. He opposed slavery and secession, and believed that the Civil War was a rich man's war and a poor man's fight. He resented the Confederate policy of exempting large slaveholders from military service, and the harsh taxation and confiscation of goods that impoverished the farmers of Jones County. He also had a deep respect and sympathy for the enslaved people, whom he regarded as fellow human beings.
After the war, Knight continued to defy the social norms and laws of the South. He left his wife Serena and moved in with Rachel, a former slave who had helped him during the war. Rachel had been owned by Knight's grandfather, and had borne several children by him. Knight and Rachel had five children of their own, and lived together until her death in 1889. Knight also helped Rachel's relatives and other freedmen to acquire land and education, and supported their voting rights.
Knight's interracial relationship and his advocacy for racial equality made him a target of hostility and violence from white supremacists. He was accused of being a traitor, a renegade, and a criminal. He faced several lawsuits and threats on his life. He also faced ostracism from his own family and community. Some of his white relatives denied their kinship with him, while some of his mixed-race descendants changed their names or passed as white to avoid discrimination. ec8f644aee