This week’s mystery movie was the 1964 film “Nothing but a Man,” with Ivan Dixon, Abbey Lincoln, unit manager William Rhodes, assistant cameraman Peter Vollstadt, electrician Frank Sukosd, location manager Philip Clarkson, assistant Clayton Riley, costumes by Nancy Ruffing, secretary Sandi Nelson, associate editor Robert Machover, assistant editor Peter Gessner, services by Cal Penny, sound mixer Albert Gramaglia, harmonica by Wilbur Kirk, titles by F. Hillsberg, music performed by Mary Wells, the Gospel Stars, Martha and the Vandellas, the Miracles, Holland Dozier, Little Stevie Wonder, the Marvelettes, musical artists by arrangement with Motown Record Corp., sound by Robert Rubin, edited by Luke Bennett, photographed by Robert Young, written by Michael Roemer and Robert Young, directed by Michael Roemer. Produced by Robert Young, Michael Roemer and Robert Rubin in association with Du Art Film Laboratories. (Note: Robert Young was the director of a previous mystery movie, “The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez”).
“Nothing but a Man” is available on DVD from TCM.
Writing in the New York Times (Sept. 21, 1964 ) Bosley Crowther said:
It is a lean, unpretentious little picture about a young Negro laborer in Alabama who gives up a good job on the railroad to marry the daughter of a Baptist preacher and settle down, then runs into all kinds of trouble because he refuses to be what he calls “a white man’s” N-word and say “yassuh, boss.”
On the surface and in the present climate, it might seem a drama of race relations in the South, and in a couple of sharp exchanges of the hero with arrogant white men, the ugly face of imminent racial conflict shows.
But essentially it is a drama of the emotional adjustment of a man to the age-old problem of earning a livelihood, supporting a family and maintaining his dignity. The conditions of making a living are made more difficult for the man in this case because he is a Negro and will not play the expected Negro role, despite the warnings of his fellow workers and the urgings of his father-in-law.
For Monday, we have a mystery woman.
Update: This is Helene Arrindell.
For Tuesday, we have a clean-shaven mystery gent.
Update: This is Yaphet Kotto.
For Wednesday, we have two mystery ministers.
Update: This is Marshal Tompkin and Stanley Greene.
Brain Trust roll call: Howard Mandelbaum (mystery movie and Monday’s and Tuesday’s mystery guests), Michael Lott (mystery movie and Monday’s and Tuesday’s mystery guests) and Anne Papineau (mystery movie and Monday’s and Tuesday’s mystery guests.
For Thursday … if you blink you’ll miss her.
Update: This is Esther Rolle.
Update: This is Gloria Foster.
… and this mystery gent.
Update: This is Julius Harris.
… here they are in the leading man’s car.
Brain Trust roll call: Howard Mandelbaum (Wednesday’s mystery ministers), Anne Papineau (Wednesday’s mystery ministers) and Sarah (Tuesday’s mystery gent).
And for Friday.
Update: This is Abbey Lincoln and Ivan Dixon.
Brain Trust roll call: Howard Mandelbaum (Thursday’s mystery guests), Roget-L.A. (mystery movie, Thursday’s mystery future TV star), Beachgal (mystery movie and all mystery guests), Tucson Barbara (mystery movie and Thursday’s mystery guests), Patricia van Hartesveldt (mystery movie and Thursday’s mystery women), Sarah (mystery movie, Thursday’s mystery future TV star), Anne Papineau (Thursday’s mystery guests), Lee Ann, Megan and Thom (mystery movie and Thursday’s mystery guests) and Sylvia E. (mystery movie, Wednesday’s mystery ministers and Thursday’s mystery guests).