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Burden

Burden

Burden

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.

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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