Lost in the Stars was an American Film Theatre adaptation of the musical play by Maxwell Anderson and Kurt Weill--which in turn was based on the Alain Paton novel Cry the Beloved Country. Brock Peters portrays a South African minister who goes to the Big City to locate his son Raymond St. Jacques, who is now a criminal in the eyes of the white rulers. The minister forges a curious, foredoomed friendship with a white farmer (Paul Rogers). Lost in the Stars has sometimes been accused of blunting the edge of Paton's angry study of the cruelties of Apartheid; fans of musical theatre will be more politely inclined to this loving filmization of the Broadway play. On its own, Cry the Beloved Country was previously filmed in 1951, with Canada Lee, Sidney Poitier and Charles Carson. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
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Another misfire from the American Film Theatre. I saw the stage production upon which this film is based in New York, and remember many powerful moments, as well as a stand-out performance from Brock Peters. There is also Kurt Weill's music -- the title song, in my opinion, is one of the most haunting ever written. I was actually looking forward to this. Unfortunately, the transition to film is virtually unwatchable. Director Mann has no clue how to deal with the material -- he may as well be filming an episode of "Maverick." And despite the real vistas, the film has that junky old TV series look and feel.