Malcolm X (1992) - full transcript

Biograpical epic of Malcolm X, the legendary African American leader. Born Malcolm Little, his father (a Garveyite Baptist minister) was killed by the Ku Klux Klan. Malcolm became a gangster, and while in jail discovered the Nation of Islam writings of Elijah Muhammad. He preaches the teachings when let out of jail, but later on goes on a pilgrimage to the city of Mecca, there he converts to the original Islamic religion and becomes a Sunni Muslim and changes his name to El-Hajj Malik Al-Shabazz. He is assassinated on February 21, 1965 and dies a Muslim martyr.

In the name of Allah, the merciful.

All praises due to Allah,
Lord of all worlds.

The one God to whom praise
is due forever.

The one who came to us in the person
of Fard Muhammad...

and raised up the honorable
Elijah Muhammad. Amen.


- How do you feel?
- Fine, sir!

- Who do we want to hear?
- Malcolm X!

Are we gonna bring him on?

Yes, we gonna bring him on.

Let us hear from our minister,
Mr. Malcolm X!

Let us bring him on with
a round of applause.

Brothers and sisters.

I'm here to tell you that
I charge the white man.

I charge the white man with being
the greatest murderer on earth.

I charge the white man with being
the greatest kidnapper on earth.

There's no place in this world
that that man can go...

and say he created peace
and harmony. Everywhere he's gone...

he's created havoc.

Everywhere he's gone,
he's created destruction.

So I charge him with being
the greatest kidnapper on this earth!

I charge him with being the greatest
murderer on this earth!

I charge him with being the greatest
robber and enslaver on this earth!

I charge the white man...

with being the greatest swine-eater
on this earth!

The greatest drunkard on this earth!

He can't deny the charges.

You can't deny the charges!
We're the living proof of those charges!

You and I are the proof.

You're not an American.
You are the victim of America!

You didn't have a choice coming here.
He didn't say...

black man, black woman, come over
and help me build America.

He said, nigger, get in the boat.

I'm taking you over there to help me
build America.

Being born here
does not make you an American.

I am not an American,
you are not American.

You're one
of the 22 million black people...

who are the victims of America.
You and I, we've never seen democracy.

There's no democracy in the fields
of Georgia. No democracy down there.

We didn't see any democracy in Harlem,
Brooklyn, Detroit, Chicago.

Ain't no democracy there.
We've never seen democracy.

All we've seen is hypocrisy.

We don't see any American dream.

We've experienced only
the American nightmare.

We want Malcolm X!
We want Malcolm X!

See that spot? Get it. The spot!

All right, that's it.

- Thanks.
- Come on.

Hey, Cholly!

Where'd you get that number you hit on?
Was it your girl's address?

No, my grandma gave me that number
in my dreams. Straight!


You said Sassy Frassy gave you...

That woman quit me.

After I hit the number,
that woman was no good to me at all.

- What happened?
- She said I was cheap...

because I wouldn't cop her
a diamond ring.

And on top of that,
had the indignation...

to call me, of all people,
Good-time Cholly...

- A cheap, black son of a bitch.
- Sassy Frassy?

Where's homeboy?

- Hey, Little.
- Yeah?

Your man out here waiting on you.

- There he is.
- Hey.

Fixing to get that first conk laid on,
eh, homeboy?

Be hot like hell.

Don't be scared, son.

You ain't got nothing to worry about.

You in the hands of an expert.

My hair was just like yours.
Look what he did for me.

Heckle and Jeckle...

Don't scare the man no more than
he's scared already.

- Get his forehead and eyebrows.
- Who's doing this?

- You all heard that!
- You all heard that.

Pull my coat if it stings.
This shit can burn a hole through cement.

Hold tight.

I thought you said
this would sting, Shorty.

This ain't nothing.

- Feel good, don't it?
- Real good?

- Yeah, it's all right.
- You'll feel better in a minute.

It is heating up a bit.

- It's starting to heat up.
- It's all right.

Feeling better, ain't it?

- Just hold on.
- I'm holding, but it's heating.

- Gotta make it straight.
- All right.

That's what he told me too.

I gotta get this out now.
It's starting...

- Hold on.
- I'm holding, I'm holding.

- Hold on.
- I'm holding on, man!

Give me a hand!
Help me out! Hold him!

- Shorty!
- We're going to the sink!

I got to get up! I got to get up!

- Cool it!
- Put water on it!

More water!

You're getting it in my eye!

- How's it feel?
- Like there's no skin on my head!

If you can talk, it's out.

- How does it look?
- Can't tell yet.

It's straight, right?
I ain't doing this again.

Let me dry it.

I can tell it's laying down.

- Don't take it off yet.
- All right.

That's the thing to do.
Come on in here and get through.

A money-maker and a heart-breaker
every step of the way.

You gonna flip.
That's right, watch your lip.

Looks white, don't it?

All right!

Well, all root!

All reet!


Hit the brim with the left.

Hey, girls.

Sweet thing.

When my mother was pregnant with me...

a party of Klansmen surrounded
our house in Omaha, Nebraska.

They brandished guns and shouted
for my father to come out.

We know you're in there, come out!

My pregnant mother went to the door...

and said that my father
was in Milwaukee, preaching.

He's in Milwaukee.

These hooded men said that
good white Christians...

would not stand for his troublemaking
and to get out of town.

It's all right.

They broke every window
with their rifle butts...

before riding off into the night.

They rode off into the moonlight on their
horses as suddenly as they had come.

My father was not a frightened Negro,
as most were and many still are today.

He was 6 feet 4, a very strong man.

He believed, as did Marcus Garvey...

that freedom, independence
and self-respect...

couldn't be achieved
by Negroes in America.

The object of building up for themselves
a great nation in Africa.


black men should leave America
and return to their land of origin.

To his original home, Africa.

My father dedicated
his life to his beliefs...

because four of his six brothers
died violently.

Three killed by white men,
and one lynched.

There were nine children in our family.

My mother was a proud woman,
an educated woman, a strong woman.

She was fair-skinned because her mother
was raped by a white man.

One reason she married my father
was because he was so black.

She hated her complexion,
the white blood in her body...

and she wanted her children
to have some color.

In fact, I think this had a profound effect
on me back then and on most Negroes today.

Because so many of our sisters...

have been raped
or violated by the white man...

black men can't wait to get their
hands on the white man's prize,

a white woman.

Africa for the Africans!

- Say Roseland.
- Roseland.


Hi, Shorty!

You're too big!

- I'm gonna come get you.
- Oh, no.

Come on, Shorty, I've gotta dance!



You in charge, boy!

You like what you see, baby?

- No! Get back here!
- Go ahead, boy!

- Red, save me! Save me!
- Gotcha! Yeah.

Come on, Shorty.
I wanna dance again!

Shorty, Shorty! Shorty.

All right, Red. Shorty, Shorty!

Laura sure can go, can't she?

- I gotta go freshen up.
- All right.

- You come on back now.
- All right, Malcolm.

That chick is fine as May wine.

Except she lives up on a hill
and got a grandmother too.

She a church girl.
I don't know what I'm gonna do.

Wanna dance?


So, what do they call you?

- Red.
- Red?

- I'm Sophia.
- How you doing, Sophia?

Very well, thank you.

I have an idea, Red.

Why don't you take that little girl
home and come on back?


Just walk, baby, don't run.

It'll be here when you get back.

Well, I better not come in.

- I'm not stupid.
- What?

It's late, baby.

I know where you're going.
I am not a total square.

- I know what's happening...
- I gotta go home. It's late.

I gotta get up early in the morning.
I gotta work tomorrow.

I'll call you tomorrow?

What for?

I'm not white and I don't put out,
so why would you want to call me?

Good night, Mrs. Johnson.
I'll call you tomorrow.

Am I the first white woman
you've been with?

No, you ain't.

Shit, I done had plenty.

- Yeah?
- Yeah.

That isn't a whore?

Take your time.

Sophia's not going anywhere.

I told you to walk.

Don't run.

I don't like women that talk
too much, okay?


Who wants to talk?

- Yeah, Red!
- Come on, you missed me.

Try this on for size.

- I ducked.
- You ducked?

You didn't! I got you
right between the toes!

I'm tired of playing the cops.
I wanna be Bogart.

Shorty, you're too small
to be Bogart.

I'm not too short to be Cagney.

- Boom.
- You...!


One more! Boom!


You dirty, rotten, stinking copper!

You used to be a big shot.

There is just nothing I can do.

- What do you mean, took his own life?
- You heard the verdict.

Verdict? A man takes a hammer
and bashes in the back of his own head?

Then he lays on the tracks
and kills himself?

We merely act on the verdicts,
we don't make them.

Do you pay or don't you?

Read the policy, ma'am.

It clearly states...

Come here, Sophia.

You're the man.

Sit down.

What's your story?

You one of them white chicks can't get
enough colored studs. Is that what you are?

Kiss my foot.

Go ahead, kiss it.

Now, feed me.


That's your story, girl.

- So when you gonna holler rape, sister?
- Me?

Yes, you.
You would, if the time came.

Sure you would.

Malcolm, let me feed you.

Come on.

While they're hot.

I wish your mother and father
could see you now.

And that ofay you're gonna marry.

I sure wish Laura could see us.

Please, Malcolm.

There's nobody around.

No, this ain't right.

- Why?
- Because you...

No, it's because of the white girl,
isn't it?

- It's not because of that.
- Folks say you run around with her.

It's not because of that.

Save it for Mr. Right.
Your grandmother's smarter than you think.

I'm sorry she raised me that way.

Is your mother alive?

Yes, she's alive.

When I was a kid, I was so poor
I thought "not for sale"...

was a brand name.

- I did knock.
- Did you hear me say, come in?

There's no point in fighting about it.
I'm sorry.

- May I sit down?
- You're nice enough to ask.

It's the same questions, Mrs. Little.

- Since your husband's death...
- Murder. Murder.

There's a question as to
whether or not you are capable...

of raising these children on your own.

These are my children.

They're mine.

And they ain't no question.

Sometimes I think, Mrs. Little,
candor is the only kindness.

All your children are delinquent.

- And one at least, Malcolm, is a thief.
- Get out of here!

Your control over your children
is therefore nonexistent.

Did you hear me?

You will regret this.

If you don't move out through that door,
you'll be past regretting!

We were parceled out, all of us.

I truly believe that if ever
a state agency destroyed a family...

it destroyed ours.

I was sent to a detention home
and lived at this woman's house.

I know you'll keep it clean.

Mrs. Swerlin.

Boys, this is Malcolm, our new guest.

We'll treat him like a brother.

Reading the news...

I was special.
The only colored kid in the class.

I became sort of a mascot,
like a pink poodle.

I got called a nigger so much,
I didn't think it was wrong.

I thought it was my name.

They talked about me like I wasn't there,
like I was a pedigreed dog or a horse...

like I was invisible.

The important thing is to be realistic.

We all like you here, you know that.

But you're a nigger...

and a lawyer is no realistic goal
for a nigger.

But why, Mr. Ostrowski?

I gets the best grades in class.

I got voted class president.
I want to be a lawyer.

I want you to think about something
that you can be.

You're good with your hands,
making things.

People would give you work.
I would, myself.

Why don't you become a carpenter?

That's a good profession
for a colored.

Wasn't your pa a carpenter?

Jesus was a carpenter.

People like you as a person.
You're doing real well.

Remember what we said.

Nothing succeeds like success.
Let me hear it.

Nothing succeeds like success.

Right. As long as you're realistic.

It's not the end of the world, Malcolm.

I said, don't...

let them give that boy no pig.

It wasn't the end of the world for me.

But it was the beginning of the end
for my mother.

A right cross to the jaw by Louis.

Louis takes Conn's head back
with a right uppercut.

Louis hits a left and a right.

And Conn is down
with a right cross to the jaw!

He's taking the count.

Four, five, six...

He's on his back. Eight. Nine.

He's getting up!
No, the referee says it's all over!

- The referee says it's all over!
- Yeah!

- What in hell is going on?
- Nothing, Mr. Cooper.

- There's a lot of hungry customers.
- Soup done finished.

That's right, Mr. Charlie.

The name is Mr. Cooper.

Don't you forget it.

Mr. Cooper.

What's the matter with you?
You want me to get fired!

I got a wife and six kids!

Mr. Cooper is good white folk!

You is a young fool!


There'll never be another one
like that!

He's done it!

And by a knockout...

and still the world's
heavyweight champion.

- Joe Louis!
- Yeah!

Ham and cheese!
Excuse me, sir.

Ham and cheese here!
I got coffee.

- Lemon meringue pie.
- Hey, boy!

- Ham and cheese.
- Yes, sir. Best in the house.

- You're pleased with yourself.
- I aims to please, sir.

I'm pleased to aim.

- I like you, boy.
- Thank you.

- Keep the change.
- Right, sir! Ham and cheese!


And here's Joe Louis,
back in Harlem.

They're celebrating!
They're going crazy!

They're dancing and cheering!
They're hanging from street signs!

Everybody's out!

Everyone's having a great time!
Listen to them roar!

Joe's a credit to his race.
What a fine gentleman!

But he's also a fine American.

The Brown Bomber, Joe Louis!

Hey, sugar.

- Slow down, daddy. What's your hurry?
- No hurry.

Let me show you something
brand-new, baby.


I got gold watches, diamond rings.

- Any one of these. Whatever you need.
- I don't need that.

You need something, baby.
Whatever you need!

A couple of these make
a player look good.

My man!

- The word is excuse me, boy.
- Excuse me don't shine my shoes.

Then you should have stayed out
of my way.

Old country nigger.

What you gonna do?

Go home to your mama?

Nigger, don't you ever, in your life,
say anything against my mother!

Get up.

Give me a whiskey.

I ordered a single, Jack.

The double's on that gentleman, Jack.

Who is that?

That's West Indian Archie.

What's his angle?

Some of this, some of that.

Come closer,
I'm not fixing to bite you.

You look like you're new in town.

From what I can see,
you're pretty handy with a bottle.

He had it coming.

Pull up a chair.

What do they call you?


And I ain't no punk.

You better not be.

Any cat toe you down here,
you stand up or make tracks.

- Man live by his rep.
- Better believe it.

- So, what do you do for yourself?
- Working on a train. Selling.

Like that job?

- Keeps me out of the Army.
- They want you, nothing will keep you out.

Not this boy.

So I hear tell
you're a good man to know.

- Where you hear that?
- Boston, where I'm from.

Kiss my neck.

I've never been in Beantown.

Like the man said,
a man's rep travels.

How about that.

You bullshitting me?

My father told me
never bullshit a West Indian.

- Your daddy's West Indian?
- My mama.

She's from Grenada.


I like this guy.
I like you, country.


Where'd you get them
goddamn vines you got on?

And them shoes? Oh, my.

We can do something about that.

But he's putting a hurting
on my vision, man. Damn.


- So how can I get ahold of you?
- You can't.

I get ahold of you.

All right, I'll write it down.

Don't ever write anything down.

File it up here.

Like I do.

If the man don't have any paper,
he will never have any proof.



Yeah, I dig. Right.

Look me in the face.

Did you, just now, con me?

Yes, sir.

- Why?
- Because I want in.

It don't take a lot to know
you're already there.

At least he ain't lying.

I have a run to make.

Let me make that run with you,
Mr. Archie.

I like your heart.

I like your style.

You might just do, Mr. Red.

Unless, of course, you have to
get back to your train job.

I've told him what to do
with that train.

- When?
- Just now.

All right.

Come with me.

I'm taking you shopping.

Cadillac's the name.

Sammy, man.

- You ready?
- Good.

Button more buttons on the jacket.

- You look good.
- Yes, man.

But you're missing something.

- Frisk me.
- What?

Go ahead, frisk me.

Nothing, right?

I'm still carrying.

This was my first gun.

Now it's yours.

Thank you.

You wear it...

Wear it so.

Small of the back.

Now you're outfitted.

- You ready to tackle the streets?
- Yeah, I'm ready.

Let them come.

Let us now turn to the Gospel
according to St. John.

Chapter 3...

verse 23.


And John also was baptizing
in Aenon near Salim...

because there was much water.

And they came...

and were baptized.



It got to be 251.


I saw it in my dream.


- What you know, daddy-o?
- I feel straight.

Your lucky day.

Roll it for me.

I told you, no paper, no trouble.

I'm working on it.

I keep all my numbers in my head.

I've never written a number down yet.
Remember that.

Your turn.


- You there?
- If I ain't, I'm right next door.

Nothing in this world can give you
that real deep cool.

The girl.

About as mellow as I can be.

Cool enough to kill.

I realize that.

- Easy, easy, easy, easy.
- Stick them up.

Hey, Archie.


Malcolm, you're so funny.

Give me some money, baby.


Come on, baby.

The bitch move too slow.

Sometimes this guy
has a big ugly mouth.

What time is it, baby?

- 8:21.
- 8:21, I like that. Combinate me.

- 821.
- Careful, Red.



- I'm taking the bet.
- Yeah, bet.

Time to reload. Time to reload.

- Say, Red!
- Red, back again, huh?

I thought you said we was going
to the movies last night.

- You said that.
- I'm sorry. I say a lot of things.

- I believed you.
- Do your job, now.

Get me a pack of Lucky Strikes
and a cognac.

Daniel come in yet?

Ain't that him now?


How you been today?
You been waiting long?

Let me look at you.

- I've been missing you today, Laura.
- How you doing, baby?

I'm all right. Copacetic. Great.
Did you work today?

No. You know what time I wound up
last night. I didn't go to work.

- I need a five-spot.
- I gave you 10 this morning.

Laura, give me the goddamn $5!

It ain't the money.
I just wanna make sure you're okay, baby.

I gotta pay back this guy.

I'll be right back.

Like last time?

I swear, I'll be right back.

Laura, I love you.

You know that chick?

- What, you a private detective now?
- Just asking.

Don't ask me no goddamn questions.

I ask you the questions.

You understand?

- She come in here a lot?
- Almost every night.

With him?

- She know he's strung out?
- If she got eyes, she do.

- She ain't hooking, is she?
- Not yet, Red.

But the way things are,
he'll turn her out any day now.

You stuck on her, huh?

See, that's your problem, girl. You need to
mind your own goddamn business, or I'm...

Don't do that!

- I wanna talk to you, all right? Have a seat.
- All right.

- All right?
- All right.

- Don't pay him any mind, hear?
- All right.

- You all right?
- I'm all right.

You buy yourself something nice.

Hey, baby.

Give me a light.

You look uptight.
What is the problem?

- No problem.
- Sure?

Everything's all right.
I'm not worrying about it.

All right.

I'm thinking about my money.

Six big ones you owe me, Archie.

- What?
- 821. It hit, didn't it?

You didn't have 821.

Were you high? I threw the slats at you,
told you to combinate me.

- I'm telling you, you never had it.
- I tell you I did. Sophia was there.

Archie, you remember, don't you?

Wait, what you expect her to say?

Don't do this.

All right?

All right.

All right, skip it.

But you're slipping, Archie?

You done slipped.

Archie, wait.

Come on, Archie. Look...

Come on. You want a drink
or something? I'm buying.

- I ain't drinking with you.
- Oh, Archie.

All right?

Come, Sam.

I'll be right there, man.

Twenty-two years.

Twenty-two years,
I never know him to forget a number.

First time for everything.

What are you talking about?

The first thing he'll do is check
with the collector for an oversight.

His rep is on the line. So is yours.

And, Red, if you're lying,
you're a dead man.

Dead, dead, dead.

You go and tell him that.

My man, Red.

Night to you.

I don't understand Archie.
You had the number.

Away from the city.

That hurts and mocks.

I'm standin' alone...

by the desolate docks.

In the still and the chill...

of the night.

I see the horizon.

The great unknown.

Didn't I tell you never sit
with your back to no door?

It's as heavy as stone.

You know what?

You're a damn liar.

And so is she.

So you figure to take me...

you bastard?

Well, I'm taking you.

- So it's you and me, huh?
- That's right.

I'll give you back the $600.

- I don't want it.
- I'm wearing.

There's three guns on you,
so you take your chances, my friend.

Will the one I love...

be coming back...

to me?

Let's walk.

I cover...

So this is how I'm going out,
huh, Archie?

- In a toe-down?
- Toe-down, yes.

- Let's go.
- Why don't we let Billie finish first.

- No.
- Red.

Must soon come back...

to me.

- Come here!
- Get him!

He's got a gun!

For the one I love...

must soon come back...

You better run!
You're going down! me.

Thank you.

Thank you very much.
Thank you.

Wake up.

Wake up!

There's somebody out there.

Wake the kids.


Follow me! Wait! Wait!

Go! Go!


- Good thing we're all good Christians.
- It's time for you to leave this town.

It's a free country.

We warned you about Garvey preaching!
Stirring up the good niggras!

I ain't a boy!

- I'm a man!
- You're a dead nigger.

And a real man don't hide behind
no bed sheets!

You take these here bullets
for them sheets!

I know you're a better shot
than that.

You should've killed them.

- You should've shot all them crackers dead.
- I just wanted to scare them.

They won't be around here
bothering us no more.

They won't be here no time soon.

I'm a man!

That'll teach you, nigger.

Get a doctor!

He doesn't need a doctor,
he needs a preacher.

I'm glad we got you out of there.

With Archie on your ass,
your name on the wire...

Boston's the best
goddamn place for you.


We'll take it easy, huh, baby?

I got a place fixed up for us
on Harvard Square. How's that sound?

Sounds good.
We'll lay low for a while.

Don't you worry about a thing.
I'll stake you, baby.

I got my band. I'm blowing great sax.
Hell, Red, you ain't even heard us play yet!

Like every hustler, I was trapped.

Cats that hung together
to find security...

to find an answer, found nothing.

Cats that might've cured cancer.

West Indian Archie might've been
a mathematical genius.

We were all victims
of the American social order.

Until that time, there were three things
I was always afraid of.

A job, a bust and jail.

But I realized then that I wasn't afraid
of anything. I was an animal.

He don't look too good.

We're gonna rob this town blind.

Anybody want out, say so now.

Good. Okay, I set up a stake,
and I got somebody to move the goods.

We need a driver.
Any suggestions?

- How about Rudy?
- Yeah, Rudy.

Who's Rudy?

I'm half-wop, half-nigger.
I'm not afraid of nobody.

Yeah, right?

- So, what do you do?
- Name it, I claim it.

Rudy does catering.
Rich joints on Beacon Hill.

- All right.
- Tell him about Baldy.

- Baldy.
- Yeah. Yeah.

He's this old, rich ofay motherfucker.

I give him a bath every Friday night.

Towel him off,
talcum powder on him, put him to bed.

Just like a baby.
He gets his jollies off.

What about him?

Guy's got jewelry. He's got
a coin collection. He's got china.

- That might be all right.
- He's got rugs.

Shit, I know this town, man.
I got my own fences.

Who is this guy, huh?

Who put you in charge?

- You wanna be in charge?
- I am in charge.

- You head nigger in charge.
- I'm the head nigger in charge.

Big-head nigger, that's what you are.

I'll tell you what we'll do, Rudy.

Because I'm a fair man...

and I like big-head niggers like you.

We'll flip for it.

We'll flip this.


She loves me.

She loves me not.

She loves me.

She loves me not.

She loves me.

I'll flip first.

Red, cool it. Come on.

Head man in charge, right?

Put the gun down.

All right, we believe you.

We believe you.

Red, stop clowning around, all right?
For chrissakes.

Your turn, Rudy.

Quit fooling around.
Come on, guys.

You don't wanna flip?

- Let me show you. I'll do it again.
- Don't!

Rudy doesn't know how.
I have to show him.

- Red.
- Did you miss something?

You got your eyes open?
Look at me, Rudy.

You don't have to do this, Red.

- Red...!
- That was really dumb.

Your flip, baby. You wanna do it?
No, you don't, do you?

I'll help you.

- Here.
- Red, don't.

Should we shoot that
wop nose of yours off?

Or is that the nigger side?
Is that the wop side or the nigger side?

Is that wop or nigger?
I guess that's the wop side.

I'm not going to jail.

Put the gun away, Red.
Come on, this is enough.

Say goodbye, Rudy.

I think I heard Rudy said something.
What did you say, Rudy?

- Speak up.
- Okay.

Jesus Christ!
When are you gonna stop?

I did two, so I owe you two, right?

You got it.

- I got it. What did you say?
- You got it.

Rudy says I got it.

Rudy, don't you ever...

try and cross someone
who ain't afraid to die, you hear me?

All right.

This is what we'll do.

We'll hit old Talcum Powder tonight.

My friend Rudy here
is gonna draw up the plans.

Everything that's in the house, right?

Peg, Sophia, you go out
and get those tools like I asked you.

We're gonna hit tonight
because some of us...

have high visibility
during the day.

It's okay with you, right, Rudy?

Merry Christmas, Rudy.

One big, happy family.

I love you.


What happened to the bullet?
Did you palm that bullet?

What bullet?

The bullet.

You're crazy.


Easy, Shorty. Easy.


My man, Red.

My man!

When's Rudy due back?

Thirty minutes.

I'm almost finished.

Girls ought to be getting back
from casing that rug joint.

They should be.

We've done a good job.

We're killing them, ain't we?

- They don't know what's hitting them.
- Yeah...

- Let me work back in this kitchen.
- You getting the kitchen?

That's where the naps are,
in the kitchen.

If you can't take the heat,
get on out of the kitchen.

- All right, let's go to the sink.
- Sure.

Come on, it's starting to heat up.

- Burning?
- Yeah. It's all right.

Put your head down.

- Come on, man.
- I turned it.

It's started to sting.
Get out of the way!

- It's burning?
- Hell, yeah, it's burning!

Goddamn it!

Hey, nigger, take your head out
of the shit bowl!

That's it. Get up slowly.

Hey! Watch it!
No funny business now.

Red, the jig is up.

The average first offender
gets two years for burglary.

We were all first offenders.
That's what the girls drew.

Two years in the women's

Our crime wasn't burglary.

It was sleeping with white girls.
They threw the book at us.

Burglary, count one, 8 to 10 years.

Count two, 8 to 10 years.

Count three, 8 to 10 years.

Count four, 8 to 10 years.

Count five, 8 to 10 years.

Count six, 8 to 10 years.
Count seven, 8 to 10 years.

Count eight, 8 to 10 years.

Count nine, 8 to 10 years.
Count ten, 8 to 10 years.

Count 11, 8 to 10 years.
Count 12, 8 to 10 years.

Count 13, 8 to 10 years,
and count 14...

Fourteen counts of 8 to 10 years.

Sentences to run concurrently.

Shorty thought he'd hit us
with over 100 years...

until I explained
what concurrently meant.

It meant a minimum of
10 years hard labor...

at the Charlestown State Prison.

The date was February 1946.

Fuck you.

Cellblock A, secure.

Close five!

Look at Satan.

I see him.

He about to bust?

He not gonna bust.
He wouldn't give them the pleasure.


- State your number.
- Little!

- What?
- Give him a break.

- He's a new fish.
- Okay, I'll give him a break.

Now state your number, Little.

- I forgot it.
- State it.

- I forgot it.
- You can read it right there, boy!

- Can't you read, boy?
- Fuck you!

I'll teach you a lesson!

I forgot it!

I forgot it!

I forgot it.

They ain't gonna break me down.

Yeah, that's the kind of nigger I am.
They ain't gonna break me down.

I'm in this situation,
and I'm getting out.

Anything go wrong, I'm strong.

Time's up, Little.

Now state your number.

Suit yourself. Ten more days.


You want a smoke?

You know what a friend
you have in Jesus, son?

A friend?

He's a friend, huh, chappy?
If he's such a friend, where is he?

What's he done for me?

A friend!

Tell you what you do,
you tell him to call me.

Call me and tell me
what kind of friend he is.

Solitary 2-2607.

What he done for me, chappy?

Where is he when I need him, huh?

You tell me that! Where is this Jesus?
I'll tell you where he is.

He's out with the police captain!
I'll straighten him out!

What's he done for me?
He ain't done nothing for me!

Done nothing for me.

What a friend we have in Jesus.
Jesus can kiss my ass!

Tell Jesus to kiss my ass.
How about that? Tell him that.


State your number, Little.

Come on, state it!




Come on.

I know how you feel.

Like you want to lay down and die.

I brought you something.

Yeah, I don't need
no more favors from you.

It's nutmeg. Put it in the water.

You need something
to get the monkey off your back.

It's not cocaine,
but it'll help some.

Drink it slow.
The stuff is strong.

So, what's your hype?

I can show you how to get out
of prison. And it's no hype.

Talk, daddy-o. I'm listening.

- This ain't bad. You got some more?
- That's the last fix I'm giving you.

So why'd you give it to me?

Because you needed it.
Because you couldn't hear me without it.

Nigger, get on out of my face.

I think you got more sense
than any cat in this prison.

Why the hell don't you use it?

You can't bust out of here
like they do in the movies.

Even if you get out,
you're still in prison.

You ain't lying there.

You'll bang against a stone wall.
You're not using your brain!

That's what the white man wants.

Look at you, putting all
that poison in your hair.

I think you been in prison too long,
because everybody on the outside conks.

Why does everybody on the outside conk?

They don't want to walk around
with a nappy head, looking like...

Looking like me?

Like a nigger?

Why not look like what you are?

What makes you ashamed of being black?

Let me tell you something.
I'm not ashamed of being anything.

You better let go.
I gotta wash this out.

- Let it burn!
- Nigger, get your hands off of me!

Go on. Burn yourself. Pain yourself.

Put all that poison in your hair,
in your body, trying to be white!

- I don't want to hear this shit.
- I thought you were smart.

But you just another cat
strutting down the avenue...

in your clown suit
with all that mess on you!

Looking like a monkey!

The white man sees you and laughs
because he knows you ain't white.

- Man, who are you?
- No, the question is, who are you?

I'll tell you.

You are lost in the darkness.

But Elijah Muhammad has come
to bring you into the light.

- Who?
- Elijah Muhammad...

can get you out of prison.

Out of the prison of your mind.

But maybe all you want is another fix.

You get used to this life,
and it puts you to sleep.

You stop thinking and acting
for yourself.

If you had to scrounge 3 squares
a day outside, you'd cut your throats.

So you let them feed you,
give you dominoes to play with.

- Let you shoot marbles, play baseball.
- Let's go. Cut the sermon.

He blows his whistle and you sit,
you stand, you grab, gobble...

file out...

- Sleep, and sing out your number.
- I told you to knock it off.


are you gonna take yard?

I'm staying.

Yeah, me too.

What are you sniffing around for?

I told you, I gave you your last fix.

What's your angle, nigger?

Who's wearing the conk?

You the only cat in this prison
I done seen act the way you do.

You ain't afraid of talking like that
in front of guards.

What's he gonna do to me
he hasn't done already?

I mean, you don't cuss none. You don't
talk that "what-ya-know-daddy" jive.

A man curses because he doesn't have
the words to say what's on his mind.


I know you gotta angle
some kind of way.

Don't con me.

Don't con me and don't try.

Hey, just offering you a cigarette,
my man. Ain't no big deal.

I read, study.

The first thing a black man
must have is self-respect.

Respect his body and his mind.

Quit taking the white man's poisons
into his body.

His cigarettes, his dope, his liquor,
his white women, his pork.


My mama used to say don't eat no pork.

Your mama was right.
That pig is a filthy beast.

Part rat, part cat and the rest is dog.

All right, pull my coat on this now.

What happen if you give all that up?

I mean, the pork. You get sick
and you get a medical or something?

Like when I was on the outside,
I ran this hustle. I tried...

I'm telling you God's words,
not no hustle.

And I'm gonna tell you God is black.

God is black?
Everybody knows God is white.

Everything the white man taught you,
you accepted.

He taught you you were
a black heathen, and you believed him.

He taught you to worship a blond,
blue-eyed Jesus...

with white skin
and you believed him.

He taught you that black was a curse,
and you believed that.

- Ever look up the word black?
- For what?

Did you ever study anything
that wasn't a con?

What the hell for, man?

Come with me.

Destitute of light...

devoid of color.

Enveloped in darkness...

hence utterly dismal or gloomy...

- As the future looked black.
- Pretty good with them words, ain't you?

Soiled with dirt...


Sullen, hostile...

forbidding, as a black day.

Foully or outrageously wicked...

as black cruelty.

Indicating disgrace,
dishonor or culpability.

And there's others.
Blackmail. Blackball. Blackguard.

That's something, all right.

Let's look up white.




The color of pure snow.

Reflecting all the rays
of the spectrum.

The opposite of black.

Free from spot or blemish.

Innocent. Pure.

Ain't this something?
Without evil intent.


Honest, square-dealing and honorable.
Wait a minute.

This was written by white folks, right?
White folks' book?

- Sure ain't no black man's book.
- What we reading this for?

Because the truth is lying there,
if you read behind the words.

You got to take everything the white man
says and use it against him.


- I mean, there's a whole lot of words here.
- Here. Let's start at the beginning.

We'll look them up, write them down
and find out what they mean. Here.

Page one, first word,


Earth pig.
African, ant-eating mammal.


Chinese calculating instrument.


The place of the lost in Sheol.

The bottomless pit.

If you take one step toward Allah...

he'll take two steps toward you.

Lights out!

Lights out.

Come on, Pete!

Boy'll wear out a baseball.

- Chuck! What's the score, my man?
- 10 to 1.

- We're murdering them! Didn't you hear?
- No. What happened?

The Dodgers brought up Jackie Robinson!
We're pounding them, celebrating!

Yeah, that's all right.


White man throw us a bone
and we're supposed to forget...

400 years of oppression.

Yeah, but a nigger...

A Negro in the big leagues,
that's something.

I told you to go behind the words
and dig out the truth.

They let us sing and dance
and smile...

and then they let one
so-called Negro into the majors.

That doesn't cancel out history's
greatest crime.

When that grafted, blue-eyed devil
locked us in chains...

one hundred million of us,
broke up our families...

tortured us...

cut us off from our language,
our religion, our history.

Let me tell you about black history.

We are the original man.

The first men on earth were black.
They ruled.

And there wasn't
a white face anywhere.

But they teach us
that we swung from trees.

That's a lie.
Black men never did that.

We were a race of kings
when the white man...

crawled on all fours in Europe.

Do they know who they are?

Do you know where you came from?
What's your name?

- Malcolm Little.
- No.

That's the name of the slave masters
that owned your family.

You don't even know who you are.

You're nothing.
Less than nothing.

Who are you?

Look, I ain't shit, heh.

All right, I ain't Malcolm Little,
or Red, or Satan.

That's right. So who are you?

- I don't know.
- We are a nation...

the tribe of Shabazz...

lost in this wilderness called
North America.

Tribe of Shabazz.

The merciful Allah
has sent us a messenger...

a black man
named Elijah Muhammad.

He reveals to us the true
knowledge about ourselves.

He teaches that the true nature
of the original man, the black man...

is righteousness.

If the black man's nature
is righteousness...

Then the true nature of
the white man is wickedness.

I knew you'd get it.

The honorable Elijah Muhammad teaches
that the white man is a devil.

I sure met some in my life.


Elijah Muhammad does not say
that some white men are devils.

He teaches us that
all white men are devils.

Have you ever known a good white man?
Think back in all your life.

Have you ever met one
who wasn't evil?

The body is a sacred temple...

it must be purified.

I will not touch
the white man's poison.

His drugs...

his liquor...

his swine...

his women.

A Muslim must be strikingly upright...

an outstanding example...

so that those in the darkness
can see the power of the light.

I will not commit adultery
or fornication.

I will not lie...

cheat or steal.

But the key to Islam is submission.

That is why five times daily,
we turn to Mecca to pray...

to bend our knees in submission.

I can't do that, Brother Baines.

The lost, found,
must bend their knees...

to admit their guilt.

To implore Allah's forgiveness
is the hardest thing on earth.

The hardest and the greatest.

I don't know
what I would say to Allah.

Have you ever bent your knees,

Yes, when I was...

When I was picking a lock
to rob someone's house.

Tell Allah that.

You can grovel and crawl for sin
but not to save your soul?

Pick the lock, Malcolm. Pick it.

I want to.

God knows I want to.

I received a letter that day
from the honorable Elijah Muhammad.

The dear Holy Apostle wrote to me...

a nobody, a junkie,
a pimp and a convict.

I have come to give you...

something which can
never be taken away from you.

I bring to you
a sense of your own worth.

The worth of one human being.

The knowledge of self.

It was like a blinding light.

I became aware
that he was in the room with me.

He wore a dark suit,
and on his face I saw a wisdom...

and pain so old and deep
that I could scarcely look at him.

But I knew I wasn't dreaming.
He was there with me.

I tell you...

the most dangerous creation
in the world...

in any society...

is the man with nothing to lose.

You do not need 10 such men
to change the world.

One will do.

The earth belongs to us...

the black man.

And whatever is around it...

or on it, or in it...

belongs to us.

And then as suddenly as he came...

he was gone.

And then I could do it.

We're taught that Paul...

on the road to Damascus,
heard the voice of Christ.

He was so smitten by the truth
that he fell from his horse.

Now, I don't liken myself to Paul...

but I do understand.

You see, it happened to me.

Why me?

I am back in the bosom of Islam,
praise Allah.

We don't have much,
but what we have is yours.

My wife and my son join me in saying
that when you come out...

which won't be long,
come straight to us.


What'll it be, Little?

Take it all off.

- Getting rid of that conk, huh?
- Yes, sir.

You write, thanking me.

Don't thank me, thank Allah.
He did it all.

Dear Brother Baines.

Please thank the honorable
Elijah Muhammad for the money...

and tell him I haven't written him...

because I've not yet proven myself.

But I have shared his teachings
with some old running buddies in Harlem...

and with my main man, Shorty,
who was transferred upstate.

He's gone nuts.

Dear Brothers.

I thank you for your time and concern.

All praises due to Allah
for the honorable Elijah Muhammad.

I wrote the mayor, the governor
and the president...

but for some reason,
I haven't heard from them.

Please tell
the honorable Elijah Muhammad...

that I have dedicated my life to telling
the white devil the truth to his face.

I greet you with the ancient words
of peace, As-Salaam-Alaikum.

P.S. I finally copied out
the entire dictionary.

I think the brother is coming along.

The thief cometh not but for to steal...

and to kill, and to destroy.

But I am come...

that they might have life...

and that they might have it
more abundantly.

Saint John 10, verse 10.
Are there any questions?

Watch it, baby.
This cat is heavy on religion.

I see this has become a struggle
between good and evil.

Satan has a question.

Yes, sir. But since
neither of us are God...

neither of us can say
who's good and who's evil.

Just ask your question.

We were discussing the Disciples.
What color were they?

Well, I don't think...

we know for certain.

- But they were Hebrews?
- That's right.

As was Jesus.
Jesus was also a Hebrew.

Just ask your question.

What color were the Hebrews?

I have told you that
we don't know that for certain.

Then you can't believe for certain
that Jesus was white.

Just a moment. Just a moment.

God is white. Isn't it obvious?

That's obvious,
but it's not obvious that God is white.

The honorable Elijah Muhammad
teaches us...

that Jesus didn't have
blond hair and blue eyes.

The honorable Elijah Muhammad
teaches that images of Jesus...

in prisons and churches
throughout the world...

are not historically correct.

Because history teaches us...

Jesus was born in a region where
the people had color.

There's proof in the Bible
you ask us to read...

in Revelations, first chapter,
verses 14 and 15...

that Jesus had hair like wool...

and feet the color of brass.

- What are you saying?
- I'm not saying anything.

I'm proving to you that Jesus was not,
to quote an Indian brother...

he was not a paleface.


Isn't that interesting.

Brother Malcolm.

Brother Malcolm.

He's waiting for you.

My son...

You have been a thief...

a drug dealer and a hustler...

and the world
is still full of temptation.

When God spoke to the devil about
how faithful Job was...

the devil argued...

that it was only
God's protective hedge around him...

that kept him pure.

In fact, the devil said...

Remove that hedge
and he will curse his maker.

Well, Malcolm...

your hedge has been removed.

And I believe...


will remain faithful.

Yes, sir.

Thank you, sister.
How many of these should we make?

- Five hundred.
- Make it 1000.

Brother Malcolm, this is Brother Earl.
He just accepted the teachings.

Yes, sir.

Brother Earl's dedicated.
We need good men like him.

I'm a willing servant for
the honorable Elijah Muhammad.

Go ahead, brothers. Keep it busy.

Take a real good look
at not just where you live...

but take a good look
at where everybody you know lives.

I don't want you to think
you're some bad-luck accident.

Then I want you to go downtown,
to Central Park West...

- And take a good look at how he lives.
- Go in other communities.

You've never seen a
Booker T. Washington linguine store...

in an Italian community.

You've never went
in a Jewish community...

and seen no
Frederick Douglass delicatessen.

Why's everybody in this community
making money but us?

It's time for the black man
and the woman to stand up...

and take control of our dollars.

It's time for us to use our dollars
for our liberation.

We can do what everyone else can do
if we become producers...

and if we become
the masters of our own destiny.

We can have wool from sheep
just like anyone else.

But where are our clothing stores?

We can get milk from cows,
but where are our grocery stores?

We need to control our dollars!
We need to control our destiny!

The only thing they respect
is our dollars!

The so-called freedom
you and I should have.

The Statue of Liberty standing like this.

For us, it may as well say,
stop, don't come no further.

This is what he be saying,
don't come no further.

What I want you to do, brothers and sisters,
I want you to come down to the temple.

Oh, I'm so surprised!

I'm so surprised.
Y'all been in church two hours...

and you're expecting to see heaven
out here, and you're still here on earth.

Why don't you come on down
to the temple at 2:00?

You'll hear truth,
the black man's truth.

No, you can't deny it. You been
on your knees for the last two hours...

begging some God to help you
in the hereafter.

But the hereafter is right now.
The hereafter is here and now.

Let me talk to you, brother.

I know you're a smart man
and a wise man.

You look good.

Now, you're in church every day,
praying to this God.

But these so-called white Christians...

they're hanging our black Christians
from trees.

This is the man that hates you.
He doesn't do anything for you.

He tells you to foam at
the mouth and sing...

and hope for something in the hereafter.
We can have it right now.

- Come on down, 2:00.
- See you later.

That means, peace be onto you.

We have two children.
Carla, who's 2 1/2, and...

Don't be ashamed when I call you black.
You are.

You're black and you're beautiful.
Black is beautiful.

You don't have to come here
begging these folks for a job.

You can wash their clothes
and scrub floors for them.

You can rock their little brats
to sleep the rest of your life.

You'll still end up poor.

Yet you're here on the auction block
being examined...

like you're a horse or a slave.

You see this here?
This is who you are. Beautiful.

Your beautiful black selves,
with pride and dignity.

In fact...

I'd also expect you to work one
Saturday every month...

and occasionally in the evening...

See, these are the questions
you and I have to ask.

How did we get this mind?

You're not an American, but an African
who happens to be in America.

You have to understand the difference.

We didn't come over on the NiƱa,
the Pinta and the whatchamacallit.

We didn't land on Plymouth Rock.
Plymouth Rock landed on us.

- Yes!
- Landed right on top of us.


Is that you, brother?

Now, this is exactly what I'm talking
about, the slave mentality.

The slave mind. This brother and I,
we had the slave mind.

We used to rob together.
We used to sleep with white women.

We even went to prison together.

Don't be surprised.
Some of you are still in prison.

Prisons of your mind.

Stand up, brother. Come on.

The brother's a little shy.

Come on, brother. Give me a hug.

That's all right, brother.
That's all right.

Look, he's still got his hair fried.

That's the slave mind.
That's the slave mind.

Red, that's the best preacher hype
I ever did hear.

No hype, brother. It's the truth.

Come back to the temple and hear more.

I can't pay that shit no mind.

You need to pay it all your mind.
What mind you have left.

Take it easy. This is me. Shorty.

Let's go around the corner...

No, sir. Not anymore.
I've been clean for eight years.

- Eight years?
- Eight years.

My trouble is, I love pigs feet
and white women too much.

So I damn sure can't be no Muslim.

That's because you're lost, brother.
That's because you're lost.

But we can find you.

What do you hear about the old gang?

You heard about Sammy?

Dead. Knocked over in bed with
a chick 25 years younger than he was.

Had 25 grand in his pocket also.

Guess it was his lucky number.

What about...?

What was that brother's name?


Gone too?

Hooked on heroin. Been in
and out of Lexington five or six times.

- Sophia?
- Still happily married to that rich ofay.

- She married him?
- She married him.

Went for the money.

- The money.
- Thank you, honey.

I haven't seen West Indian Archie.

Grapevine says he's living
somewhere in the Bronx.

If you wanna call that living.

- It's been good seeing you.
- Same here, Red.

Get the hell away from me, bitch!

I'll pay you tomorrow!

How you doing, Archie?

My man, Red.

Come here, man.

No, don't get up. It's all right.


really you, Red?

Yes, it's me.

I came to...

Just to thank you...

for saving my life.

When I think back to when we were
on the streets of Harlem trying...

to gun each other down...

I wasn't going to shoot you, man.

It was...

just my rep.

You know?

All I had was my rep.

But now...

you tell me this.

You did really have that number?

I don't know, Archie...

I don't remember,
and it's not important.

The important thing now
is to get you back on your feet.

You know, I have some angles...

ain't been figured yet.

It's all right.

Help me with my arm.

I need to exercise my arm.


That's better?

Yep. It feels good.


What happened to our women?

Women who could've been doctors,
or lawyers...

or teachers or mothers.
Who'll raise our children?

What happened to our men?

Men who could've been mathematicians,
electricians, physicians.

What's the little boy gonna do...

when he's looking for his father,
and his father's downtown in jail?

What'll the little girl do...

when she's looking for her mother,
and she's out there selling herself?

Laura. Wait for me.

I'm telling you, that devil
has made dead souls out of you and I.

You're dead.

You're dead, spiritually.

You're dead to the knowledge
of yourself and your people...

and to the knowledge
of your God.

Why, my brothers and sisters,
he should get down on his knees.

He should beg our mercy.

Oh, my brothers and sisters...

his kind has committed
God's greatest crime...

against your and my kind
every day of his life!

He should get on his knees
and say he's committed a crime.

But does he do that?

Does he do that?
No. No, he scorns you.

He splits your head with
his nightstick.

He busts you in the head
with that billy club.

And he calls you a nigger...

Calls you a coon. That's what he
says to you. Boy! Nigger!

Four hundred years is long enough.

You've sat down and laid down
and bowed down for 400 years.

I think it's time to stand up.
I think it's time to stand up.

- We're with you!
- All right.

- Bless you. Bless you.
- I'm with you.

Come on up.

Glory! My Lord! Praise Him!
Praise Him! Praise Him!

Yes, sir. Next Wednesday, 8:00.

- I'll be there.
- I'll see you there.

Brother Baines? Excuse me, sister.

Do you think we can get
a loudspeaker set up outside?

I'm sure we can.

Brother Malcolm, this is Sister Betty.

She lectures our Muslim women
on hygiene and diet.

She stresses care for the body
and regular eating habits.


- As-Salaam-Alaikum.
- Alaikum-Salaam, sister.

Brother Minister...

the sister wonders if you know
what Harriet Tubman did...

between taking souls
to the Promised Land?

No. What's that, sister?

She ate.

Excuse me.

She's interesting.

Minister, I was hoping
you'd come and speak to my class.


Yes, I'll speak to your class.

- But I'm a hard man on the women.
- Are you?

We must be very careful
when it comes to women.

Too many of our women...

have too much of the devil in them.

Bleaching and dyeing...

and ironing their hair.

Running around in the streets

Talking too much.

Listening to the wrong men...

making them deceitful,
untrustworthy, fresh.

And you men are to blame too.

We don't protect, we don't value,
we don't even support them.

See, the building of a new nation
begins with the woman.

Because the mother...

is the first teacher of the child.

The message she gives that child, the child
gives to the world, so we have to be careful.

When it comes to choosing a mate...

Samson, the strongest man
that ever lived, was destroyed...

by the woman that slept in his arms.

Should I tell my sisters then...

- That we don't believe in marriage?
- No.

No, we don't oppose marriage.

We're not Catholic priests.

We don't believe in celibacy.

Mr. Muhammad teaches
that if a woman...

is the right height for a man,
right complexion...

If she's...

half the man's age, plus seven.

And if...

she understands that man's
essential nature is strong...

and she's willing to support that.

And if she...

can sew and cook and...

loves children...

and stays out of trouble...

I think you've made your points,
Brother Minister.


- You haven't any time for marriage.
- No.

So, what I'll do is
write the chapters down for you.

All right.

As well as the New Testament
chapters in St. Matthew.

Brother Minister...

I hope that doesn't mean
you won't come visit my class though.

Oh, no. No, I'd love to come to your class.
I love to teach.

I love sharing. This is the wonderful
thing about Mr. Muhammad.

When he gives you this knowledge, you
can't help but to run out and share it...

Excuse me, Brother Minister...

would it be okay if we...

just sat down for a moment?

- It's a pretty big building and...
- Oh, yes.

Sister, I'm sorry.
I've had you on your feet all day.

Oh, no. No, no.

My mistake.

You've been on your feet for days.

And you didn't even finish
your salad.

So let's talk about you
for a change.

How tall are you?

Why do you ask?

Idle question.

Well, if it's just an idle question,
I hope you won't force me to answer.

No, I won't force you.


Brother Baines says that
I'm tall enough for a tall man.

He's briefed you also?

How old are you, sister?

You know, there are
a few things about women...

that you don't understand.

Some of us,
we're quite possessive, very vain...

Are you?

And persistent when
we've set our mind to something.

What have you set your mind to?

Being a good Muslim...

a good nurse...

and a good wife.

Brother Malcolm?

- Excuse me.
- Certainly.

Brother Johnson was attacked
by the police.

Excuse me.

- A scuffle.
- He was just watching.

- The cop said move on!
- He didn't move quick enough for him.

Crack! He was bleeding
like a stuck hog.

So, what you gonna do?

He'll rap a little. He's a Muslim!

But you ain't gonna do nothing
but make a speech.

Muslims talk a good game,
but they never do nothing...

unless somebody bothers Muslims.

We demand to see Brother Johnson.

- Who the hell are you?
- I'm the minister from Muslim Temple No. 7.

Never heard of you.

- Where is he?
- Not here.

Wait a second. What is your name?

Don't worry about what my name is.

Two witnesses saw Johnson brought here
beat up, but not brought out.

You didn't hear the sergeant?

I suggest you look outside
that window.

- Jimmy, come here a second.
- Yes, we intend to see Brother Johnson.

Who the hell are they?

They're brothers of Brother Johnson.

Eddie, let me take a look
at that blotter.

Yeah. We got a Muslim.
Relief must've put it down.

- Must have.
- But you can't see him.

- Because you ain't his lawyer.
- No lawyer, no see.

Until I'm satisfied that Brother Johnson
is receiving proper medical care...

nobody will move.

Get an ambulance. Now!

Break it up. You got what you wanted.

No, I'm not satisfied.

To the hospital.

Suzie, come on.

We want justice! We want justice!

All right, that's enough.

Move these people out of here.

Fruit of Islam are disciplined men.
They haven't broken any laws yet.

- What about them?
- That's your headache, captain.

But if Brother Johnson dies,
I pity you.


He'll live.
He's getting the best care we have.

- Thank you.
- Certainly.

All right, okay.

Now, let's disperse this mob!

We want justice! We want justice!

That's too much power
for one man to have.

Brother Minister,
I'm ready to take some heads.

We gotta do something
to put fear in those devils.

I'm ready to do something also.
The word out of Chicago was to be patient.

- I'm tired of being patient.
- Then you get on the phone...

You get on the phone, call Chicago
and let Mr. Muhammad know.

Have a seat, son.

The only thing I like integrated...

is my coffee.

What can I do for you?

Well, Mr. X...

my name is Benjamin.

I was out there tonight.

Take it easy now.

And I saw what it is that you did.

The way you talked
to them policeman and all.

Well, Mr. X...

I want to be a Muslim.

I ain't never seen a nigger...
I mean...

colored person...


talk to no police like that before.

And you want to be a Muslim?
Join the Nation Of Islam?

You know what that means?
To be a Muslim?

Do you?

No, not exactly.
But I wanna be one...

just like you.

You shouldn't join any organization
unless you know exactly what it's about.

Thank you.

You shouldn't give up so easily either.

We could use more young warriors
like yourself.

Come on by the temple
next Wednesday 8:00.

8:00 sharp.

Yes, sir. 8:00 sharp.

Thank you, Mr. X. And I won't
make you out a liar either.

No, I don't think you will.

Tonight, I shall...

introduce you
as my national minister.

It will be a difficult task.

Your assignment...

is to build temples
all over this nation.

More work than you've ever done.

Yes, sir.

You will be in the public eye.

Beware of them cameras.

Oh, them cameras...

are bad as any narcotic.


White devil will be watching
your every step.

And your own brothers will be...



Go slowly.

Yes, sir.

Here's a glass.

It's dirty water.


If you offer this to the people...

they have no choice.

They'll drink from it...

if they're thirsty.

But if you offer them...

this glass...

and let them make
their own decision...

they will choose the pure vessel.


is the only religion...

that addresses
the needs and the problems...

of the so-called Negro in America.

- Especially in the slums...
- Right.


Islam is the only way out
for drugs and crime...

unemployment, prostitution...



and adultery, fornication.

This sweet gentle man...

at whose feet I kneeled
gave me the truth from his own mouth.

Present them the pure vessel.

I adored him in the sense
of the Latin root of the word adorare...

which means to worship and to fear.

He was the first man I ever feared.

I don't mean fear
such as one has of a gun...

but the fear one has
of the power of the sun.

I pledged myself to him,
even if it cost me my life.

- Hello?
- Hello, Betty?

- Yes?
- Yeah, this is Malcolm.

- I know.
- Right, I'm here in Detroit.

- Will you marry me?
- Yes.

You heard what I said, right?

- Did you hear my answer?
- Yes, I think so.

Brother Malcolm...

- Are you eating?
- Yeah, I've been eating.


I love you, Betty.

I love you back.

It's not gonna be easy.

No choice.

I'll be away a lot.

I know.

In fact, I'm leaving in the morning.

Oh, hush, now...

Pittsburgh, Philadelphia...

Trenton, Newark,
up through number 7 up to Boston.


You're with me...

even when you're away.

I've never told you this...

but the very first time
I ever saw you...

standing up on the podium...

you were cleaning your glasses...

and I felt so sorry for you.

Sorry for me?


Because no one as young as you
should be so serious.

But I don't think that anymore.

What do you think?

I want to have a lot of babies with you.

Dear heart.

I love you.

We're waiting on you folks.
Trying to starve us?

Brother Malcolm, Sister Betty...

we pray that Allah blesses you
with a happy and fruitful marriage.

Congratulations, Brother Minister.

- Congratulations.
- Front page.

Check them out. Front page!

I must emphasize at the out start...

that the honorable Elijah Muhammad
is not a politician.

So I'm not here this afternoon
as a Republican nor as a Democrat.

Tell it, brother!

- Not as a Mason nor as an Elk.
- Well, tell us what you're here for!

Not as a Protestant nor a Catholic.

Not as a Christian nor a Jew.

Not as a Baptist nor a Methodist.

In fact, not even as an American.

Because if I was an American...

the problem that confronts our people
today wouldn't even exist.

So now we ain't Americans, huh?

So I have to stand here today
as what I was when I was born.

A black man.

Before there was any such thing as a
Republican or a Democrat, we were black.

Before there was any such thing
as a Mason or an Elk, we were black.

Before there was any such thing as a Jew
or a Christian, we were black people.

In fact, before there was any such place
as America, we were black.

And after America has long passed
from the scene...

there will still be black people.

I'm gonna tell you like it really is!

Every election year, these politicians
are sent up here to pacify us.

They're sent here and set up here
by the white man.

This is what they do.

They send drugs in Harlem down here
to pacify us!

They send alcohol down here
to pacify us!

They send prostitution down here
to pacify us!

You can't get drugs in Harlem
without the white man's permission.

You can't get prostitution in Harlem
without the white man's permission.

You can't get gambling in Harlem
without the white man's permission.

Every time you break the seal
on that liquor bottle...

that's a government seal
you're breaking.

So I say, and I say it again,
you been had.

You been took.

You been hoodwinked.

Bamboozled. Led astray.

Run amuck. This is what he does.

You know, some people
call this hate-teaching.

- This isn't hate-teaching.
- That's right.

This is love-teaching.

I wouldn't tell you this
if I didn't love you.

I wouldn't stick my neck out for you
if I didn't love you.

Everything I teach you...

everything I have said to you...

has been taught to me
by this dear man.

This divine man.

All praise is due to Allah
for the honorable Elijah Muhammad.

Attallah's fine.

And she misses you as much as I do.

But the news that you've dedicated
four new temples is almost as good...

as having you with us. Oh, dear
heart, please take care of yourself.

White people try to hide their guilt...

by accusing
the honorable Elijah Muhammad...

of being a black supremacist...

simply because he's trying
to uplift the mentality...

the social and economic condition
of his people.

And the Jews who have been guilty
of exploiting black people...

try to hide their guilt by accusing
the honorable Elijah Muhammad...

of being anti-Semitic...

simply because he's trying
to teach you and I...

He's trying to teach you and I...

to be in charge of the businesses
in our own community.

To own the businesses
in our own community.

To have economic leadership
in our own community.

No! No, this isn't black supremacy.

This is black intelligence.

The black people in this country...

have been the victims of violence...

at the hands
of the American white man...

for 400 years.

Four hundred years.

We thought by following
those ignorant Negro preachers...

that it was God-like
to turn the other cheek...

to the group that was brutalizing us.

A hundred years ago,
they used to put on white sheets...

and sic bloodhounds on us.

Nowadays, they've traded in the sheets.

Some have traded in the sheets.

They've traded in the sheets.

Please, please.

They've traded in those white sheets
for police uniforms.

They traded in the bloodhounds
for police dogs.

And just like Uncle Tom
back during slavery time...

We must remain true to nonviolence.
I'm asking everybody in the line.

If you can't be nonviolent,
don't get in it.

To love our enemy and pray
for those who use us spitefully.

You've got chicken-pecking Uncle Tom,
so-called Negro leaders today.

And it's another great day.

You've got these Uncle Tom
Negro leaders today...

that tell us we ought to pray
for our enemies.

We ought to love our enemy
and integrate with the enemy...

who bombs us, who kills
and shoots us, who lynches us...

who rapes our women
and children. No!


No! That's not intelligent.

That's not intelligent.

The honorable Elijah Muhammad
is trying to teach you and I...

that just as the white man
and any other man on this earth...

has the God-given right,
the human right, the civil right...

the natural right, and any other
rights you can think of...

to protect himself...

just as this white man has
the right to defend himself...

we have the right
to defend ourselves too.

This is only natural.

This is what the honorable Elijah
Muhammad is trying to teach you and I.

He's not teaching us
to hate the white man.

He's teaching us to love ourselves.

Mr. X, before we begin
our discussion tonight...

The black muslims.
Hate Mongers...

would you mind explaining for us
the meaning of your name...

which is the letter X?

Yes, during slavery time,
the slave master...

gave the Negro,
so-called Negro...

named the so-called Negro
after themselves.

The honorable Elijah Muhammad
teaches us...

that once we come into the knowledge
of Islam, the knowledge of ourselves...

we replace our slave name
with an X...

X in mathematics representing
the unknown.

Since we've been disconnected,
or cut off from our own history...

our own past, our own culture,
our own land...

we use the X, the unknown,
until we get back to our country.

I see. Thank you. Dr. Payson?

Mr. X is a...
He's a demagogue.

He has no place to go,
so he exaggerates.

He's a disservice to every good...

law-abiding, church-going
American Negro in the country.

Mr. Malcolm X...

why do you teach black supremacy?

Why...? Why do you teach hate?

Well, for the white man...

to ask the black man...

why he hates him...

is like the wolf asking the sheep,
or the rapist asking the raped...

Do you hate me?

The white man is in no moral position
to accuse the black man of anything.

This is a black man asking the question.

What would you call an educated Negro
with a B.A., an M.A., a B.S. or a Ph.D.?

You call him a nigger.
That's what the white man calls him.

You have to understand this thinking.

To understand this type of man,
you must understand that historically...

the house Negro and the field Negro.

The house Negro lived in the house...

next to his master, in the big house,
in the basement or the attic.

He dressed good, he ate good,
what the master left him.

He loved his master.

He loved his master better
than the master loved himself.

If master said, we got a nice house,
you say, yeah, boss, we got a nice house.

Master's house caught on fire,
the house Negro...

would put the blaze out.

If the master got sick, he'd say,
what's the matter, boss? We sick?

We sick!
This is the thinking of the house Negro.

If another slave said to him...

Let's run away, let's separate
from this cruel master...

He said, why? What's better
than what we got here?

I'm not going anywhere.
This is the house Negro.

In those days,
we called them house niggers.

That's what we call them today because
we still got a lot of house niggers.

Dear Holy Apostle...

the ministers think Malcolm
is getting too much press.

They think he thinks
he is the Nation of Islam.

That he has aspirations
to lead the Nation.

It was you who made Malcolm
the man he is.

You lifted him out of darkness.


You go and tell the brothers...

that what the Brother Minister...

is doing, has done...

has been of great benefit
to the Nation.

And you tell them that I say so.

The ministers think he is
of great benefit to himself.

One at a time.

Did you say white people are devils?

I said they're devils.

Should all blacks be armed, sir?

Well, one of your most
famous men said...

Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.
That's the way you think.

Do you think your cause
will be successful?

I sincerely hope so.

- Do you advocate violence?
- No, sir.

Has a white man helped your people?

Has there been a white man
that's helped my people?

- Correct.
- I don't understand the question.

You preach anti-white,
anti-Christian science.

You're saying you're anti-white?

- No, you're saying it.
- Are all white people devils?

We've gotta move out.
We've got a plane to catch.

Excuse me, Mr. X?

I've read some of your speeches...

and I honestly believe that a lot
of what you have to say is true.

I'm a good person in spite
of what my ancestors did.

I just wanted to ask you...

what can a white person like me,
who isn't prejudiced...

what can I do to help you
and further your cause?


My high school was a black ghetto...

in Roxbury, right here in Boston.

I got my college education on
the streets of Harlem in New York City.

I took my master's degree in prison,
over the course of 6 1/2 years.

In fact...

my old burglary hangout
was just outside this campus.

I lived like an animal.

I stole.

I used drugs.

I smoked reefers, cocaine.

I committed adultery. Had it not been
for the honorable Elijah Muhammad...

I'd have surely been in
an insane asylum or dead...

or possibly even a murderer
of one of you.

So, what is Mr. Muhammad trying to do?
He's trying to get us on God's side...

so that God will be on our side
and help us fight our battles.

When the so-called Negro in America
gets on God's side...

and listens to the teachings
of the honorable Elijah Muhammad...

he'll want to get off of drugs
and get away from a life of crime.

He'll want to get away
from committing adultery.

Then he'd want to get off welfare.
He'd want a job...

to take care of his family.
And his family would respect him.

His son will say,
I'm proud that that's my father.

His wife will say,
I'm proud that that's my husband.

Father only means that you're taking care
of your children. That's what it is.

Father doesn't mean
that you're having some babies.

That doesn't make you a father.
Anybody can go out and get a woman.

But not anybody can take care
of that woman.

There's another word for it.
It's called responsibility.

If the so-called Negro in America
was truly an American citizen...

we wouldn't have a racial problem.

If the Emancipation Proclamation was
authentic, we wouldn't have a race problem.

If the 13th,
14th and 15th amendments...

were authentic,
we wouldn't have a race problem.

If the Supreme Court desegregation
decision were authentic...

we wouldn't have a race problem.

But you have to see
that all of this is hypocrisy.

These Negro leaders are telling
the white man...

that everything's all right,
we got it under control.

That everything the honorable
Elijah Muhammad teaches is wrong.

Mr. Muhammad said these things
were gonna come to pass...

and now this things
are starting to come to pass.

Now these same Negro leaders...

are running around talking about
there's about to be a racial explosion.

Yes, there's gonna be
a racial explosion.

And a racial explosion is
more dangerous than an atomic explosion.

There's going to be an explosion because
black people are dissatisfied...

not only with the white man,
but with these Uncle Tom Negro leaders...

that are trying to pose as spokesmen
for you and I.

Just like you have a...

Just like you have a powder keg.

When you have a powder keg
and there's too many sparks...

the thing's going to explode.

If the thing that's going to explode
is sitting inside the house...

and if it explodes, then the house
is going to be destroyed.

I said the house is going
to be destroyed.

The honorable Elijah Muhammad
is teaching you and I...

and trying to tell the white man
to get this powder keg out of his house.

Let the black man separate
from his house.

Let the black man have his own house.

Let the black man have
his own land and property.

The honorable Elijah Muhammad
is trying to tell the white man...

that this thing, this explosion,
is gonna bring down his house.

This is what he's telling him.
More importantly, he's telling him...

that if he doesn't do
something about it...

if he doesn't do something about it,
it's gonna explode any day now.

Yes it is.

I'm just here to tell you,
and I'm gonna make it very short.

I'm here to tell you about the honorable
Elijah Muhammad's greatest greatness.

His greatest greatness is
that he has the only solution...

for peace in this country.

The honorable Elijah Muhammad's

is the only solution for you and I.

It's the only solution for the white man.

Complete separation...

between the black race
and the white race.

It's the only solution.

All praise due to Allah
for Elijah Muhammad!

All praise due to Allah
for Elijah Muhammad!

Brother Malcolm!

Yes, yes. Hold on, hold on.

Yes, sir. It's all right.
My brother. How you doing?

- Can I ask you something?
- Anything.

Are you Elijah's pimp?

- He should be killed talking like that!
- Hold it. Hold on.

What are you saying, brother?

His greatest greatness.

Just say what you're saying.

If you don't know...

I feel the sorriest for you.

Oh, come on, brother.

- Let me tell you something...
- No. Let me tell...

It's all right.

He's just hungry for knowledge,
that's all.

Yeah, that brother's starving.

So am I. Come on,
let's get something to eat.

We'll talk about it tomorrow.

- Okay, night-night, Daddy.
- Night-night.

Long night.

Oh, yeah.

- What you looking at?
- You.

- Why you looking at me like that?
- Because you're in trouble.

- How do you know that?
- Oh, dear heart.

Because I know you.

Well, if you know me...

you know that I don't like to bring
my troubles into my house.

You know that also.

- Yes, I do.
- Okay.

But I'm not made of glass.

And I won't break.

Look, Betty, I just want peace.

I want to sit here with you.
I want to...

be still. I want peace in my house.

- Have we ever had a fight?
- Never.

- Argument?
- Never had one, no.

We're gonna have one...

- Right now if you don't talk about it.
- Talk about what?

- The talk's everywhere.
- There's always gonna be talk.

Aren't they talking now about me trying
to take over the Nation?

Aren't they talking about
how we're getting rich...

off the Nation of Islam?

- We could talk about that too.
- Let's talk about it.

It's not just talk anymore.

Elijah Muhammad...

67-year-old leader
of the Black Muslim movement...

today faced paternity suits
from two former secretaries.

These are slanders. These are lies.
Don't you realize that?

Don't you realize whose newspaper this is.
This is the devil's newspaper.

He's trying to divide us.

Don't you see that? Divide and conquer.
He's trying to bring down our leader.

Both women...

in their 20s,
charge that they had intimacy...

Intimacies with Mr. Muhammad.

You think I'm not
aware of these accusations?

You think I'm not
aware of these vicious lies?

Brother Baines and I
discussed it today.

- Baines? Is he your friend?
- What's the matter with you?

What's the matter with you?

Wake up! Are you so committed
that you've blinded yourself?

You're so dedicated,
you can't face the truth?


He's the editor of the newspaper
that you established.

Ask him why your name hasn't appeared
in Muhammad Speaks in over a year.

- I'm not interested in publicity.
- You're in every other paper.

- Not one single sentence in your own.
- Our people know what I'm doing.

- But do you know what Baines is doing?
- What is this Baines? Baines!

You're so blind!
Everyone can see this but you!

Baines is the one who saved my life.

When I crawled in prison
like an animal...

he brought me to
the honorable Elijah Muhammad.

And the honorable Elijah Muhammad
brought me back from the dead...

A long time ago! You've repaid them!

Don't you raise your voice
in my house!

Ask them.

Ask them why they have new cars,
houses and furniture.

Is that what this is about?
You want new furniture?

- You want some cars?
- What do we have?

What do we have, Malcolm?

Broken-down jalopy...

The clothes on our backs.

You want new clothes?
I'll get you new clothes.

We don't even own our own home.

What about our children?
What about me?

You don't even own life insurance.

The Nation will provide for you
if anything happens to me...

Will they?

Are you sure?

Or are you blind?

All right.

I've got work to do, so...

There's always work to do.

- Help me.
- I'm trying to.

I'm raising our children
practically by myself.

And what am I doing?

What do you want me to do?
Stay home?

You don't know how often they ask,
where's Daddy? I want Daddy.

You want me to make the beds
and go on the road?

- The people need me!
- We need you!

I need you too.
But what do you want me to do?

Open your eyes. Open your eyes.

You can face death 24 hours a day,
but the possibility of betrayal...

never enters your head.

Open your eyes.

- As-Salaam-Alaikum, minister.
- Alaikum-Salaam, sister.

Her name's Eva Marie.

And she's 2 years old.

Brother Minister,
I didn't do anything wrong.

I didn't do anything to be
put in isolation.

I believed in him.

I believed in
the honorable Elijah Muhammad.

Believe in Allah.

This is Saudi. She's 2.

And you have Lisha. She's 3.

From their own mouths,
I heard who had fathered their children.

And from their own mouths I heard
that the honorable Elijah Muhammad...

- had told them I was his best.
- He often spoke of you.

He loves you like you were his own son.

The greatest minister he had,
but that I would leave him...

turn against him,
and so I was dangerous.

The honorable Elijah Muhammad,
while praising me to my face...

And he said that about me?

Was tearing me apart behind my back.

- You're sure about all this?
- Yes, I am.

All I want is support for
my three children...

that the honorable Elijah Muhammad
provide for them.

That's all I want.

Allah will provide...

for all of us.

What are you talking about, blackout?
Perhaps some brothers are a little jealous.

Maybe they think you've been
getting too much press.

It's nothing. Forget it.

Now, about our coming up
in the world a little.

The Nation's grown.
We've grown with it.

You know our people.

They want their leaders
to be prosperous.

One hand washes the other.

I'm telling you God's words,
not no hustle.

Remember what you told me in prison?

I'm telling you God's words,
not no hustle.

Brother Malcolm...

What do you want? A new car?

A new house?

It's the money, isn't it?

But we tell the whole world that
we're moral leaders...

because we follow...

the personal example of
the honorable Elijah Muhammad.

Elijah Muhammad is a human being...

and so are you.

- Do you know your Bible?
- Do you?

David slept with Bathsheba...

but he's remembered
for slaying Goliath.

Noah was accused of drunkenness,
but God gave him the ark.

Solomon had 700 wives, but he
was history's greatest, wisest king.

Brother Baines is a two-bit hustler,
but one hand washes the other.

A great man's deeds
outweigh his personal weaknesses.

Who needs the nutmeg now, brother?

- I'm not gonna allow...
- Be careful, Malcolm.

I warn you.

You be careful.

I'm not surprised.

You have a very good understanding
of prophecy, of spiritual matters.

I'm not surprised.

I have built this Nation...

under the divine guidance of Allah.

He has brought me back
from the dead to lead my people.

After me, there will be no more.

No more.

I must...

plant my seed in fertile soil.

It is only...

the fulfillment of prophecy.

My faith had been shattered
in a way I can never fully describe.

Every second of my 12 years
with Mr. Muhammad...

I'd been ready
to lay down my life for him.

The thing to me that is worse than
death itself is betrayal.

I could conceive death,
but I couldn't conceive betrayal.

Not of the loyalty I gave to
the Nation of Islam and Mr. Muhammad.

During the previous 12 years, if
Mr. Muhammad had committed any crime...

punishable by death,
I would have tried to prove I did it...

to save him.

I would have gladly gone
to the electric chair in his place.

What did he say?

- I'm so sorry.
- There's nothing to be sorry about.

I just got a lot of work to do,
that's all.

How can you work?

Because we have to teach.

We gotta teach the people.
We gotta teach on Solomon, Moses...

Solomon had 700 wives.

A man's good deeds,
they far outweigh any of his...

My father used to say that...

you can't make a rooster stop
crowing after sunrise.

Well, the sun is up.

So, what do I say about this
so-called national day of mourning?

I say the white man's acts of violence
should be condemned...

by our beliefs and by his own.

The Koran teaches us that
those who work evil...

will be condemned, punished
or judged according to their works.

The Holy Bible teaches us
that you reap what you sow.

This is divine justice.

In the Americas' soil, the white man
has planted seeds of hatred...

the seeds of violence.

He's allowed those weeds
to grow up and choke...

the lives of millions of black men
and women for 400 years...

and the lives of Indians in these
Americas for 500 years.

And now those same weeds have choked one
of his own gardeners, his chief gardener.

You ask me what I say.
I only say what the Bible says.

I say what the Koran says.

I say it's justice.

Don't you even feel a bit of remorse...

saddened by President Kennedy's

I don't think anyone would deny that
when you send chickens...

out from your barnyard...

those chickens will return to
your barnyard, not your neighbor's.

It's an example of the devil's chickens
coming home to roost.

The violence that he's
perpetrated here and abroad...

be it four children in Birmingham,
or Medgar Evers, or in Africa...

this same violence has claimed
one of their own.

Being a farm boy, chickens coming home
to roost never made me sad.

In fact, it's only made me glad.

Did you...

read the paper today?

Yes, sir. I did.

That was a bad statement you made.

You knew from my instructions...

no minister was to make
any statements against this man.

The country loved this man.

You have made it...


for Muslims...

in general.

Yes, sir.

We must disassociate ourselves...

from your terrible blunder.

I must silence you.

For 90 days...

you must not make any statements
to the press...

nor are you to speak at any temples.

Yes, sir.

Yes, sir. I submit 100 percent.

Leave us alone.

- Betty?
- Leave us alone. Stop calling here.

Who's putting you up to this?
We have children here!

Stop it!


It's all right.

They keep calling.

They keep calling.


take the babies
and put them to bed.

Come on, babies.
Let's go to bed now.

- Bedtime.
- Come on.

Let's go.

- Good night, Mommy.
- Good night, Daddy.

- Good night, Sidney.
- Night-night.

Brother Minister,
I have to level with you.

They gave me a mission...

but I couldn't do it.

- I love you all.
- What kind of mission?

To wire your car...

so it would explode...

when you turned the ignition.

The ministers say you're spreading
untruths about Mr. Muhammad.

They say that
you're the greatest hypocrite...

a Judas...

a Benedict Arnold.

The ministers say that
your tongue should be cut out...

and delivered
to Mr. Muhammad's doorstep.

And what do you say?

I'm with you, Brother Minister.

You'll be marked for death.

Yes, sir.

Let me die then.

I can't come between you
and your father.

- You're my father.
- Go on home.

Don't come back.
That's an order.

Yes, sir.

Because 1964 threatens to be an
explosive year on the racial front...

I have called this press conference
to clarify my position in that struggle.

Internal differences within the Nation
of Islam have forced me out of it.

In the past, I thought and spoke the words
of the honorable Elijah Muhammad.

Everything I said, I started with

the honorable Elijah Muhammad
teaches us thus-and-so.

That day is over.

From now on I speak my own words,
and I think my own thoughts.

Now that I have more
independence of action...

I'll use a more flexible approach
in working with others...

to solve this problem.

I'm not out to fight other Negro leaders.

I've forgotten every bad thing
other leaders said about me...

and I pray they'll forget the many
bad things I said about them.

We must work together to find a common
solution to a common problem.

I will organize and lead
a new mosque in New York City.

Muslim Mosque, Incorporated.

This gives us the religious base
and the spiritual force...

necessary to rid our people
of the vices...

that destroy the moral fiber
of our community.

Our politics
will be Black Nationalism...

meaning, we want to control
our community's politics.

The Muslim Mosque, Inc.
will remain open...

for ideas and financial aid
from all quarters.

Whites can help us,
but they can't join us.

There can't be black-white unity
until there's first black unity.

We can't unite with others...

until we've first learned
to unite amongst ourselves.

We can't be acceptable to others...

until we have first
proven acceptable to ourselves.

In my desire to fully understand
the religion of Islam...

as practiced by 750 million
Muslims around the world...

I intend to make a pilgrimage,
or holy journey, to Mecca.

This pilgrimage is
a religious requirement...

or duty,
of every Muslim that is able...

to make the pilgrimage
at least once in his lifetime.

I'm Egyptian. And you?


What's your name?

- Malcolm.
- Malcolm.

Yes, I want to get...

- How much?
- Twenty Egyptian pounds.

For one?

- Special price for you.
- Special for me!

Okay, thank you.
Where can I get a better price?

- What's your name?
- Mohammed.

Mohammed, I'm Malcolm.

- Malcolm X. And you?
- Gamaal.

All right, Gamaal. I'm from Harlem.
From the United States.


- Harlem.
- Hareem?

No, not Hareem. Harlem.

Can you show me around?

- Hash?
- No. No hashish.

- You know, the pyramids.
- Yeah!

No, pyramids. Pyramids. Pyramids.

- Pyramids?
- Pyramids.

- You're gonna take me?
- Yes. Yes.

Sphinx. Sphinx.

My darling Betty.

Everywhere I go, I am welcomed
as a representative of our people.

Our struggle is known
and respected worldwide.

Coincidentally, two white men
follow me around wherever I go.

I wonder who they're working for?

If I was a betting man,
I'd say the CIA.

What's your guess?

Today I arrived in Arabia.

I have never witnessed
such sincere hospitality...

and true brotherhood...

as practiced here...

in the ancient home
of Abraham, Mohammed...

and the great prophets
of the scriptures.

Today, with thousands of others...

I proclaimed God's greatness
in the sacred city of Mecca.

In the ihram garb, I made
my seven circuits around the Kaaba.

I drank from the well of Zem Zem.

I prayed to Allah from Mount Arafat.

It was the only time in my life that
I stood before the creator of all...

and felt like a complete human being.

Now, you may be shocked
by these words...

but I've eaten from the same plate,
drunk from the same glass...

and prayed to the same God
with Muslims whose eyes were blue...

whose hair was blond, and whose
skin was the whitest of white.

And we were all brothers...


People of all colors and races
believing in one God, in one humanity.

Each hour in this sacred land gives me...

greater spiritual insight into
what is happening in America.

The American Negro can never
be blamed for his racial animosities.

He's only reacting to 400 years of
oppression and discrimination.

But as racism leads America
up the suicidal path...

I believe the younger generation
will see the writing on the wall...

and many will want to turn to
the spiritual path of truth...

the only way left to ward off
the disaster...

that racism must surely lead to.

Once before, in prison,
the truth came and blinded me.

Well, it has happened again.

In the past, I've made sweeping
indictments of all white people.

And these generalizations
have caused injuries...

to some white folks
who didn't deserve them.

Because of the spiritual rebirth
which I was blessed to undergo...

as a result of my pilgrimage...

to the holy city of Mecca...

I no longer subscribe
to sweeping indictments of one race.

I intend...

to be very careful not to...

careful not to sentence anyone
who has not been proven guilty.

I am not a racist...

and I do not subscribe to any
of the tenets of racism.

In all honesty and sincerity...

it can be stated that I wish
nothing but freedom, justice...

and equality...

life, liberty and the pursuit
of happiness for all people.

My first concern is with the group
to which I belong...

for we, more than others,
are deprived of our inalienable rights.

But the true practice of Islam...

can remove the cancer of racism...

from the hearts and the souls
of all Americans.

If I can die having brought any light...

having exposed any truth that
will help destroy this disease...

then all the credit is due to Allah,
the Lord of all the worlds.

And only the mistakes have been mine.

Please give all my love to the children.

I love you dearly.

El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz...

Malcolm X.

Let's begin.

Malcolm, you said on your trip abroad
you sensed a feeling of great brotherhood.

Yes, when I was in Mecca
making the pilgrimage...

the brotherhood that existed there
among all people, all races...

all levels of people who
had accepted the religion of Islam...

what it had done
for those people, despite...

their complexion differences...

Perhaps if people
here in America would try...

and practice and study the religion
of Islam, it might help...

to erase the plague of racism here.

I think Muslims over there
look at themselves as...

human beings, as part of
the same human family.

Today my friends are black...

red, yellow, brown and white.

Are you prepared to ask the U.N.
to bring charges against the U.S...

for its treatment of Negroes?

Oh, yes. Oh, yes.

The audience will have to be quiet.

Please, please.

Yes, as I stated earlier that...

those nations,
African, Latin, Asian nations...

are hypocritical
when they stand up in the U.N.

and denounce the racism practiced
in South Africa...

but say absolutely nothing about...

the practice of racism here
in American society.

Now, I wouldn't be a man
if I didn't do so.

Will you work now with leaders
of other civil rights organizations?

Yes, we're prepared to work with
any groups, leaders, organizations...

as long as they're
genuinely interested in results.

Positive results.

Does your new beard have any
religious significance?

No, not particularly, but...

I think that as black people
in America strive...

to throw off the shackles
of mental colonialism...

they'll also reflect their desire...

to throw off the shackles of
cultural colonialism.

I believe that a mental and cultural
migration back to Africa...

not necessarily a physical one...

but a mental and cultural
migration back to Africa...

which means we reaffirm our bond
with our brothers over there...

would help to strengthen us here,
black people in America.

Not only spiritually,
but it would give us the incentive...

to solve some of our problems here,
at home.

One of your
more controversial remarks...

called for black people to get
rifles and form clubs.

Do you still favor that for self-defense?

I don't see why that's controversial.

If white people find themselves
the victims...

of the violence black people found
themselves victims of in America...

and if the government was unable
or unwilling to do anything...

it'd be intelligence on their part
to defend themselves.

What about the guns?

When you tell your people to stop
being violent against my people...

- I'll tell my people to put away their guns.
- So you're still an extremist.

Get your hand out of my pocket!


Next question.

Malcolm, you one dead, red nigger.

Your days on this earth
are numbered, brother.

Come to bed.

Get some rest.

I'm sorry, Betty.

Sorry for what?

I haven't been the best husband
or the best father.

A family shouldn't be separated
like ours has been.

I promise I'll never make a long trip
without you and the children.

I miss you and the girls.

We will be together,
I promise you that.

Dear heart...

I love you.

Thank you.

Now get some sleep.

We had the best organization
the black man has ever seen.

Niggers ruined it.


Betty, wake up.

Come on! Let's get up!

Girls, come on! Come on!
Out! Out!

Outside! Out! Out! Out!

Go, go! Run, run!

Go across the street!

- Somebody call the fire department!
- Help! Help!

Call the fire department, please!

Somebody call the fire department!

I'm a man!

Evidently, the...

some type of Molotov bomb was thrown
against the back of the house.

One was thrown on the side
of the house, from what I can tell.

It bounced up against the window
and woke my daughter.

Had it gone inside,
my 2-year-old, my 4-year-old...

and my 6-year-old daughter
would have...

Had that happened,
I'd have taken my rifle...

and gone after anyone in sight.

Was this a warning
or an attempt on your life?

What, does it look like
a warning to you?

This was a definite attempt...

by the Nation of Islam, upon
the strict orders of Mr. Elijah Muhammad.

- Muslim headquarters say...
- I don't care what they say.

I see what they're doing.

Minister Baines, can you tell us
who bombed the house?

We feel it's a publicity stunt
on the part of Malcolm X.

We hope it isn't a case of, well...

if he can't keep the house,
we won't get it either.

That's enough. Excuse me.


I'm all right. I'm all right.

- Betty and the kids?
- They're fine.

Let's post some
men in front of the house.

- Did you see anybody?
- No, but I know who it is.

- You know I know who did it.
- Give us the command.

Don't worry about the command.
Two men on post, two in front!

We got an informant among us,
whether you like it or not.

Now, we gotta weed this so-called
brother out before things get too crazy.

Spark it.

As-Salaam-Alaikum, my brothers.

- Here's your key. Enjoy your stay.
- Thank you.


Brother Earl, it's Malcolm.

- Earl.
- Malcolm. Where are you?

We've been calling
all over the city.

Hold on.

I'm downtown.

I'm in a hotel trying
to get some work done for tomorrow.

- Let me bring some brothers there.
- That's all right.

I wish you'd listen to us.

We must frisk people
at the Audubon Ballroom meeting.

No, no. I don't want...

I don't want anybody frisked.

We have to change our way
of thinking.

We have to make people
feel comfortable.

If I can't be safe around my own kind,
who can I be safe around?

I trust Allah will protect me.

Believing in Allah is one thing,
but I also believe in being armed.

We don't want black people
killing each other, all right?

All right?

We'll protect you, Malcolm.


No, peace be unto you, Earl.
Peace be unto you.

Good evening.
Do you have a Malcolm X registered?

Your red nigger is dead
and so are your bastard children!

- Hello.
- Wake up, brother.


You hear me and hear me well.
You come anywhere near my family...

- and I will kill you.
- Betty?

Do you hear?

02:54:35,214 --> 02:54:36,0SS14

- Betty, it's me. It's Malcolm.
- Malcolm.

They keep calling.

They keep threatening.
I go crazy every time a phone rings.

Just don't answer the phone.
Everything will be all right.

- When will it stop?
- Don't answer the phone.

- Are the brothers there on post?
- Yes, they're outside.

Let them answer the phone.
Don't touch the phone.

Beloved, where are you?

I'm in a hotel.

In a hotel.

- The girls asleep?
- Yes.

I just put them down to bed.

Can we come to the meeting tomorrow?

No, I don't think so.

The girls and I want to see you.
We miss you.

Betty, it's too dangerous.

It's been dangerous.

Listen, I haven't told this to anybody...

but I've been thinking...

about what's been happening
to me lately, to us lately...

and I'm gonna stop saying
the Nation of Islam's behind this.

I know what they can and can't do.
I trained them.

Some of the things that have
been happening lately...

I'm gonna stop saying it's just
the Nation of Islam.

They're not working alone.

They're getting a lot of help.

Are you sure?

I miss you, Betty.

You're with us even when you're away.

Now, listen, you come on down
to the Audubon tomorrow.

We'll be all right. We're not gonna
let this get us down. We'll be fine.

You come on down. Bring the girls too.

The girls and I miss you so much.

I'll see you tomorrow.

Compared to King, this guy's a monk.

- Good night. Sleep well. I love you.
- Good night.

Sweetheart, Attallah, sit back.

Sit up. Sit up straight.

Mama, I want the doll.

Go sit down.


- What do you say to the nice man?
- Thank you.

You're very welcome,
my beautiful sister.


The minister hasn't arrived yet.

Don't worry.
He'll be here like clockwork.



Are you all right?

Are you okay?

- Yeah.
- Good. I recognize you.

Don't you pay them folks
no never mind.

You just keep right on doing
what you doing.

Yes, ma'am.

- I'll pray for you, son.
- Well, thank you.

Jesus will protect you.

Is the charter ready?

- No, Brother Minister.
- No?

No? Why not?

You had enough time, didn't you?

I apologize.
We'll have it next week.

We don't have next week.
We need it today.

The people want to hear
the charter today.

Next week, Minister.

Is the reverend here?

The reverend called and said
he wouldn't be able to attend.

So now we don't have
an opening speaker or a charter...

Why didn't you say this last night
when I talked to you?

- I called Sister Betty...
- You didn't have to call her.

You should've told me.
Why tell her?

- I assumed that...
- Don't assume anything!

Go on down front.

- Sister, you go on with the brother.
- Yes, sir.


What's wrong?

It's a time for martyrs now.

The way I feel...

I shouldn't go out there today.

Fine. Let's cancel it.

My wife out there? My children?

Down front, as always.

Go out to the pay phone outside.

Call up the reverend,
see if he can make it down here.

I gotta be on post, Malcolm.
I'm supposed to be out there guarding you.

- Besides, that's a duty for secretaries...
- Go out to the pay phone.

Call up the reverend.

See if he can make it down here.


Please, let's settle down.
Let's get the program started.

Thank you.

I apologize for raising
my voice earlier.

It was very disrespectful.

Brother Minister, I understand.

Why, styles are changing...

minds are changing,
why, everything is changing.

So you and I must consider that
we're living in very changing times.

And what might be true today
may not be true tomorrow.

And without any further ado,
I present to you...

Brother Minister Malcolm.
And I pray...

that you and I will listen. Listen...

hear and understand. Thank you.


Get your hand out of my pocket!


Please. Hold it.

Calm down. Please, brothers!





Get an ambulance!

- Somebody get an ambulance!
- They killed him!

They killed him!

I'm gonna kill you!
I'm gonna kill you!

Get him!

He killed Malcolm!

Back off, people!

We've got multiple shooting victims.

Get out of the way!


Stand back! Get out of the way!
Get back!

Give us a statement, sir! Please!

The person you know
as Malcolm X is no more.

The assassination...

of Malcolm X was
an unfortunate tragedy.

And it reveals that
there are still...

numerous people
in our nation who have...

degenerated to the point of
expressing dissent through murder...

and we haven't learned to disagree
without being violently disagreeable.


at this final hour...

in this quiet place...

Harlem has come to bid farewell...

to one of its brightest hopes...

extinguished now...

and gone from us forever.

It is not in the memory
of man that this...

beleaguered, unfortunate...

but nonetheless proud community...

has found a braver,
more gallant young champion...

than this Afro-American
who lies before us...

unconquered still.

I say the word again as
he would want me to.


Afro-American Malcolm.

Malcolm had stopped being Negro...

years ago.

It had become too small, too puny,
too weak a word for him.

Malcolm was bigger than that.

Malcolm had become...

an Afro-American.

And he wanted so desperately...

that we, that all his people...

would become Afro-Americans too.

There are those who
still consider it their duty...

as friends of the Negro people,
to tell us...

to revile him.

To flee, even from
the presence of his memory.

To save ourselves...

by writing him out of
the history of our turbulent times.

And we will smile.

They will say that
he is of hate, a fanatic...

a racist, who can only bring
evil to the cause...

for which you struggle.

And we will answer and
say unto them...

Did you ever talk...

to Brother Malcolm?

Did you ever touch him...

or have him smile at you?

Did you ever really listen to him?

You haven't done the right thing.

Was he ever associated
with violence or any public disturbance?

For if you did, you would know him.

And if you knew him...

you would know why
we must honor him.

Malcolm was our manhood.
Our living, black manhood.

This was his meaning
to his people.

And in honoring him,
we honor the best in ourselves.

However much we may have
differed with him...

or with each other about him
and his value as a man...

let his going from us serve...

only to bring us together now...

consigning these mortal
remains to earth...

the common mother of all...

secure in the knowledge
that what we place in the ground...

is no more now a man...

but a seed...

which after the winter of
our discontent...

will come forth again to meet us.

And we shall know him then...

for what he was and is.

A prince.

Our own black shining prince...

who didn't hesitate to die...


he loved us so.

And so today, May 19th,
we celebrate Malcolm X's birthday...

because he was a great,
great Afro-American.

Malcolm X is you, all of you.

And you are Malcolm X.

I'm Malcolm X!

- I'm Malcolm X!
- I'm Malcolm X!

- I'm Malcolm X!
- I am Malcolm X!

- I am Malcolm X!
- I am Malcolm X!

As Brother Malcolm said...

We declare...

our right...

on this earth...

to be a man...

to be a human being...

to be given the rights...

of a human being...

to be respected...

as a human being...

in this society...

on this earth...

in this day...

which we intend to bring...

into existence...

by any means necessary!