Tuesday, February 07, 2012


Based on author Alex Haley's bestselling novel (and his family's lineage), Roots (1977) is a sweeping 12-hour historical drama that opened the floodgates for the golden age of television miniseries.

Enslaved African warrior Kunta Kinte (LeVar Burton) refuses to bow to oppression alongside his mentor, Fiddler (Lou Gossett Jr.), and repeatedly attempts to escape. Even in his hobbled old age -- played with dignified perfection by John Amos -- he refuses to accept his slave name, Toby. Kunta's defiant legacy endures in succeeding generations.

Eventually, Chicken George (Ben Vereen) uses his skills as a plucky handler of gamecocks to buy freedom for himself and his children, the great-grandchildren of Kunta Kinte.

Roots tells the epic story of a family's struggle to maintain a solid identity against all odds.

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