Search - Of Civil Wrongs and Rights - The Fred Korematsu Story on DVD

Of Civil Wrongs and Rights - The Fred Korematsu Story
Of Civil Wrongs and Rights - The Fred Korematsu Story
Actors: Fred Korematsu, Rosa Parks, Bill Clinton
Director: Eric Paul Fournier
Genres: Documentary, Military & War
NR     2007     1hr 10min

In 1942, Fred Korematsu was an average 23-year-old California native working as a shipyard welder. But when he refused to obey Executive Order 9006, which sent 120,000 Americans of Japanese ancestry into internment camps, ...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Fred Korematsu, Rosa Parks, Bill Clinton
Director: Eric Paul Fournier
Genres: Documentary, Military & War
Sub-Genres: Biography, World War II, Civil War, History, Military & War, Military & War
Studio: Docurama
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 03/27/2007
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 1hr 10min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Anatomy of a Case
Jeffery Mingo | Homewood, IL USA | 12/20/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)

"Too many people think the Supreme Court is perfect. It's not! Look at "Plessy v. Ferguson" or "Bowers v. Hardwick"! They screw up and the "Korematsu" decision from the 1940s is part of that. This documentary takes an extensive look at that case.

This work breaks down dichotomies and pushes aside simple explanations. We learn that the national ACLU did not want the Northern California branch to take this case. The work said Japanese Americans shunned Korematsu because they thought he didn't want to be associated with them. Later the work tries to figure out how relatively liberal Justices could err so terribly.

This work has diverse interviewees: Japanese and whites; men and women; older people and younger ones. I gasped when seeing the dude who taught a constitutional law class I took. I didn't care to see that conceited, self-absorbed man on my screen. They show a photo that Korematsu took with Hirabayashi; it reminded me of the photo of King and X together. Actually, Korematsu really reminds me of Rosa Parks in many ways.

Korematsu tried to get his eyelids changed. I know many younger women try to get rid of epicanthic folds now, but I didn't know a man could do it back then. Many viewers may benefit from watching this alongside the documentary "Going for Broke.""
An absorbing and timely documentary film
NCTejana | Texas, USA | 10/04/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This film is one of the most powerful I've ever seen aired on PBS, and I've watched innumerable documentaries there over the last 10 years. As noted by an earlier reviewer, the case is examined in close detail and the presentation contains many insights into the ins and outs of how it initially came to be handled the way it was: the biases within the Asian-American and non-Asian-American communities, Korematsu's own reasons for opposing the internment (along with the obvious civil rights interests, he had personal reasons as a young man involved in a romance that would be interrupted), and the lies that were told by the U.S. government even over the objections of its own legal advisors.

Even more thought-provoking and interesting is the examination of how a new generation of lawyers and law students rose up to challenge the original decision many decades later. Their relentless pursuit of a way to get the faults of the case addressed in a new legal precedent is an amazing story in which Korematsu himself once again played a key role.

I first saw this film not long after the events of 9/11 and the reactionary, emotional climate of restrictive law-making and ethnicity-based harassment that ensued in the United States. The closing portion of the film discusses the continuing relevance both of Mr. Korematsu and of his legal case in 21st-century America. The results both disturbed and inspired me, and I cannot recommend it more highly."