Burden (2020) - Rotten Tomatoes


Burden (2020)



Critic Consensus: Burden grapples clumsily with its undeniably worthy themes, but its honorable intentions -- and strong performances -- make it easy to forgive those flaws.

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When a museum celebrating the Ku Klux Klan opens in a small South Carolina town, the idealistic Reverend Kennedy (Academy Award (R)-winner Forest Whitaker) resolves to do everything in his power to prevent long-simmering racial tensions from boiling over. But the members of Kennedy's congregation are shocked to discover that his plan includes sheltering Mike Burden (Garrett Hedlund), a Klansman whose relationships with both a single-mother (Andrea Riseborough) and a high-school friend (Usher Raymond) force him to re-examine his long-held beliefs. After Kennedy helps Mike leave behind his violent past, the Baptist preacher finds himself on a collision course with manipulative KKK leader Tom Griffin (Tom Wilkinson). In the face of grave threats to himself and his family, the resolute Kennedy bravely pursues a path toward peace, setting aside his own misgivings in the hopes of healing his wounded community. From Oscar (R)-nominated filmmaker Robbie Brenner (Dallas Buyers Club) and writer/director Andrew Heckler comes this dramatic true story of compassion and grace in the American South.

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Garrett Hedlund
as Mike Burden
Forest Whitaker
as Rev. Kennedy
Tom Wilkinson
as Tom Griffin
Crystal Fox
as Janice Kennedy
Usher Raymond
as Clarence Brooks
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Critic Reviews for Burden

All Critics (63) | Top Critics (15)

Like Green Book, The Blind Side, The Soloist and so on, Burden fits too snugly into the white-saviour mode of storytelling. Which is a shame, because everyone involved here is doing their best in trying to craft layered characters with compelling agendas.

June 27, 2020 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

"Burden" does a great job of giving the viewer a look at the lives of those in the KKK beyond their hatred, but it misses the mark on making an impact on the viewer.

March 5, 2020 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

"Burden" is a film of integrity, with something even better than a social conscience. It has a social purpose. If you see it, you'll learn something.

March 3, 2020 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Writer and director Andrew Heckler has managed to make a powerful film, if not a very subtle one.

March 3, 2020 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

I think it has a great cast and there are some good performances, but I thought at times the direction wasn't great and it veered into that white savior territory.

February 28, 2020 | Full Review…

Overall, Burden is too long and many of its beats have been appropriated from other movies about Southern racism.

February 28, 2020 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

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