After more than 20 years in England, Chicken George is finally given his freedom by his English owner. George returns to the Lea farm to discover the plantation in disarray, defunct, and nearly abandoned. He finds Tom Lea in the big house, food rotting in decrepit conditions. George confronts Lea and learns that his family was sold off to North Carolina in his absence. He tracks them down and is reunited with Matilda but finds his youngest boy, Tom, a master blacksmith, is now the leader of the family. Tom is a loving and hardworking man but he nurses a cold rage against his father, believing he abandoned the family to entertain white men and gamble on gamecocks. George is forced to leave the Murray farm and meets up with a young, hot-headed slave, Cyrus (portrayed by T.I.). Honestly, T.I. does a better job than he’s ever done on film, but he playing against some very real pros and it shows. He seems out of place and even though he is meant to represent a future freedom, he seems almost too modern. Together, Cyrus and George join the Memphis Colored Battery and barely escape with their lives. Once home, Tom leads his family off the Murray farm, embarking on a new life.
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