Most martyrs of the civil-rights movement have been memorialized, yet one crucial figure is absent from the tributes and textbooks: Viola Liuzzo. This documentary sheds light on this Detroit mother's sacrifice and strives to give her children a deferred sense of closure. You wish that di Florio's ambitious attempt to tie in the personal stories with the sociopolitical legacy of Liuzzo's death didn't feel so jumbled, or that the director's questionable aesthetic choices didn't substantially downgrade the proceedings. As an epitaph, Home of the Brave succeeds in properly lionizing its heroine; as a film, its faults undercut its fervid homage with frustrating regularity.
Paola di Florio
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