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A Raisin in the Sun (2008)

PG-13 | | Drama | TV Movie 25 February 2008
An African-American family struggles with poverty, racism, and inner conflict as they strive for a better way of life. Based on the play by Lorraine Hansberry.



(teleplay), (play)

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 10 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Walter Lee Younger
Beneatha Younger
Ruth Younger
Lena Younger
Travis Younger
Willy Harris (as Ron C. Jones)
George Murchison
Carl Lindner
Earline Johnson
Rudy Webb ...
Mr Johnson
Walter Lee Sr
Mrs. Arnold
Paul Stephen ...
Mr. Arnold


After moving to Chicago's South Side in the 1950s, a black family struggles to deal with poverty, racism, and inner conflict as they strive for a better life. Adapted for the screen from Lorraine Hansberry's play, this is a moving portrait of dreams deferred. Written by Anonymous

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PG-13 | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

25 February 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El color de los sueños  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs


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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The Broadway production of "A Raisin in the Sun" by Lorraine Hansberry opened at the Ethel Barrymore Theater in New York on March 11, 1959, ran for 530 performances and was nominated for the 1960 Tony Award (New York City) for the Best Play. See more »


When they are packing up the apartment, Momma is working on putting sticks around a small plant to protect it to wrap it. The number and location of the sticks are not in sync with the timing. See more »


Asagai: There is something wrong when all the dreams of a household depend on a man dying.
See more »


Featured in 15th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards (2009) See more »


I Dream Of Love And You
Written by Mervyn Warren
Performed by Mervyn Warren
See more »

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User Reviews

Fine job, for the most part
4 March 2008 | by See all my reviews

In 1959 Chicago, the Younger family lives in a small apartment with cockroaches and other problems, although they have done their best to make it look nice.

Walter works as a chauffeur for a white family that doesn't seem to acknowledge him as a human being. He is tired of "Yassir" and "Nossir" and wants to start his own business with friends Bobo and Willy.

Walter's mother Lena works as a maid and is loved by the little girl she cares for, but she can quit that job now since she is getting a $10,000 life insurance check after the death of her husband.

Walter's wife Ruth does people's laundry and raises their son Travis. Walter's sister Beneatha also lives with them, sharing a room with her mother. Travis sleeps on the couch in the living room.

What is the best way to spend the insurance money? Beneatha could use it to go to medical school. She is in college now, and she has two potential romantic partners--George, who comes from a rich family and is about as black as Carlton Banks, and language professor Joseph Asagai, who wants to teach Beneatha about Africa.

But Walter wants to open a liquor store. Imagine how that will go over with his devout Christian mother.

Lena sees a great opportunity to move into a better neighborhood. But the people next door to the house she finds are all white and don't want blacks moving in.

For the most part, this movie came across as the quality production ABC told us it was. The characters are strong and have values, but the question is how much will circumstances cause them to question those values.

Phylicia Rashad will surely be mentioned at Emmy time. She was outstanding, showing so much emotion when the time came to do it. It's the first time I ever saw her play a truly black character. I had to look closely to make sure it was actually her. Up until now, she has played attractive, young-looking women who could have been any ethnic group but happened to be dark-skinned.

Audra McDonald also did a very good job, and she was quite good-looking even here, with such a nice smile.

David Oyelowo showed so much passion for his heritage and for teaching the woman he cared about to have the same passion.

Not to take anything away from her performance, but Sanaa Lathan just got on my nerves. Perhaps that means she was doing everything right.

Sean Patrick Thomas did a good job showing another side of black culture; in the 1950s most blacks did not have money, and despite having dark skin, he seemed out of touch with the problems of his race, quite content with life.

Sean Combs didn't quite give the impression of quality that ABC had led me to expect. He was good, but almost always so bitter. I can't blame the writing, because Sidney Poitier played the role, and we all know he would have done a magnificent job with it. But Combs was good enough.

Bill Nunn had one fine scene as Bobo. He was in several other scenes, but he lived up to the promise of this film.

I liked John Stamos a lot on "Full House" (in fact, he was the reason I started watching the show in the first place). I liked him here. But surely not everyone will. He seemed out of place in this type of production. It was like watching Uncle Jesse facing Aunt Becky and trying to weasel out of having behaved in a racist way, mainly by explaining it was everyone else who wanted him to do it. But he was not threatening at all.

This is certainly worth seeing.

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