Carib’s Gold

Release Date:  9/30/1956
Black & White
Genre:  Drama
Director:  Harold Young
Studio(s):  Splendora International, Onyx Pictures
Running Time:  71 mins./62 mins.

Ethel Waters as “Mom” Ryan: Ryan’s mother, owner of Duffy’s bar and restaurant.
Coley Wallace as Ryan: a diver who discovers sunken treasure.
Peter Dawson as Neely: skipper of the shrimping boat, the Capt. Geech.
Richard Ward as Lechock: a diver hired to help salvage the shipwreck, but who steals some of the treasure and murders Barb.
Cecil Cunningham as Barb: Mate/deckhand on the Capt. Geech.
William T. Hill as Cap: Owner & manager of the Capt. Geech.
Cicely Tyson as Dottie: Barb’s wife.
George Renna as Bartender.
Diana Sands as Bar Girl.
Henry Hayward as Willie: a deckhand on the Capt. Geech.
Ruth Sawyer as Baby: Ryan’s wife.
Geoffrey Holder as Voodoo Dancer.

Synopsis:  When Ryan, a sailor on a shrimp boat fishing off the Florida Keys, finds a sunken treasure of gold while diving to repair some nets, the demeanor of the boat’s crew changes. A diver hired to help salvage the wreck kills a crew member, then escapes with part of the treasure and is pursued through the Keys by the harbor police. After hijacking a car, the killer continues his escape, but when he hears a radio news broadcast report that a roadblock has been set up to prevent his going to the mainland, he returns to Key West. Ryan tracks the killer by searching the local bars. He  eventually finds the killer and turns him over to the police.

Notes:  Carib Gold was filmed almost entirely in Key West, Florida, with locally-cast musicians and extras. It is most notable for its largely African-American cast headlined by Ethel Waters, and was the feature-film debut of actresses Cicely Tyson and Diana Sands. It also marked the debut of dancer-actor Geoffrey Holder.  According to the LA Mirror-News review, Holder performed a voodoo dance in the film.

The film premiered on Sunday, September 30, 1956, exclusively at the Strand and Monroe Theaters on Duval Street in Key West. The film’s premiere was segregated, with the Strand screening the film for whites and the Monroe screening it for blacks. Following its premiere, the film had a very short run, being shown in both theaters for only two more days.  No national release date for the picture has been located.

According to documents in the Department of Defense [DOD] Collection the footage was shot for the Navy Diving School in Washington, D.C. for “a series of navy productions concerning diving equipment and procedures.”  Permission was granted to the production company to look at the requested footage and copy portions of it at the company’s expense. Although reviews of the film mention the inclusion of extensive underwater footage, it has not been determined if those sequences consisted partially or exclusively of the Navy footage.  Modern sources state that the underwater sequences, were shot at the then newly constructed Miami Seaquarium.

Thought lost for decades, the film is now in the public domain and was digitized in early 2012 and released online for free public viewing by Southern Methodist University.  Sources:; Wikipedia;  Photo Sources:; youtube.


A Fall From Grace

Release Date:  1/17/20; Netflix
Genre: Thriller
Rating:   Unknown
Director:  Tyler Perry
Studio(s):   Tyler Perry Studios
Running Time:  Unknown

Cast:   Tyler Perry, Crystal Fox, Phylicia Rashad, Bresha Webb, Cicely Tyson.

Story  Tyler Perry is teaming up with Netflix for a new thriller about a woman whose world is shattered by secrets.  On 11/22/19, the writer-director-producer announced on Twitter, that his upcoming film, A Fall from Grace will begin streaming on the platform on Jan. 17.  Netflix’s Strong Black Lead account also shared the news in a tweet saying the drama will be centered around a divorced woman who feels restored by a new romance, secrets soon start to erode her short-lived joy.  Source:  Deadline.  Poster Source:


Showing Roots

Showing RootsRelease Date:   5/26/16; Lifetime
Genre:   Drama
Rating:  NR
Director:  Michael Wilson
Studio(s):   Michael Mailer Films, Upload Films
Cast:   Uzo Aduba, Maggie Grace, Adam Brody, Elizabeth McGovern, Viva Bianca, Cicely Tyson.

Story  Set in 1977, Showing Roots explores the pent up racial tensions of a small town through the eyes of two women (Maggie Grace and Uzo Aduba), who work together at the local beauty parlor.  They forge an unlikely friendship and become inspired to integrate their town when the miniseries Roots hits the airwaves – much to the dismay of those around them.  Source:  Lifetime.


The Trip to Bountiful

The Trip to BountifulRelease Date:  March 8, 2014 (Made-for-TV; Lifetime Network)
Genre:  Drama
Rating:  Not Available
Studio:  Ostar Productions/Lifetime Television
Director:  Michael Wilson
Cast:  Cicely Tyson (Mrs. Watts), Vanessa Williams (Jessie Mae Watts), Blair Underwood (Ludie Watts), Clancy Brown (Sheriff) Keke Palmer (Thelma).

Story:  As reported on January 6, 2014 by Broadway World, The Trip to Bountiful is a television adaptation of American playwright and screenwriter Horton Foote’s Tony nominated play. Set during the final years of the Jim Crow South, the film follows one woman’s quest to reconnect with her past in order to ensure her family’s future.

In The Trip to Bountiful, Carrie Watts (Tyson, who was awarded with a Tony for her role in the Broadway revival), begrudgingly lives with her busy, overprotective son, Ludie (Underwood) and pretentious daughter-in-law, Jessie Mae (Williams). No longer able to drive and forbidden to travel alone, she wishes for freedom from the confines of the house and begs her son to take her on a visit to her hometown of Bountiful. When he refuses, Mrs. Watts is undeterred and makes an escape to the local bus station, where she befriends Thelma (Palmer), a young woman traveling home. When Ludie and Jessie Mae discover she is gone, they call in law enforcement to help, but Mrs. Watts is one step ahead of them and convinces the local sheriff to help her on her journey home to Bountiful.  (Source(s):  Broadway World).