Alternate History

An Average Citizen (Napoleon's World)

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An Average Citizen is a 1973 crime film written and directed by Jack Kennedy. As his third and final directorial effort, the film is regarded as a part of the Kennedy Series. The film stars Sam Carter, Billy Dee Williams, Lee H. Oswald, Luke Douglas, and Jim Cramer, featuring an unusual cast of almost exclusively black actors. Set in Covenant in the early 1950's, it explores the landscape of the city at the height of the civil rights era and the efforts of the FBI to inflitrate one of the South's largest crime rings with a rare black agent, who becomes torn between his racial identity and his duty to the United States. The film was critically acclaimed and dominated the awards circuit, and was viewed as the rehabilitating film in Kennedy's career, which had sagged significantly after his enormously successful Oahu in 1962.


In 1950, two white Covenant police officers are found dead in the Mississippi River, and Covenant Chief of Police Bull McAdoo (Roy Hood) calls the FBI for help. Seeking to make headlines, new FBI Director Clyde Tolson (James Mayhew) makes the controversial decision to recruit one of the few black agents in the FBI, Percy Dunn (Sam Carter) to infiltrate the Potter group, the suspected perpetrators behind the murder of the police officers and the largest crime organization in Covenant after the fall of the Jacksons in the 1930's. Dunn is sent to Covenant with Special Agent Miles Watson (Lee Oswald), a racist Texan who resents having to work with a black man. Watson rents a hotel room in Stuart, Mississippi across the river from Covenant, where he wallows in boredom and entertains himself by drinking at a bar across the street, where he befriends the bartender and starts up a relationship with a dancer (Jane Laws).

Dunn gets a job at a factory, where he comes to realize that the local union's power comes from outside of the factory, and he manages to secure a meeting with Slippy Holly (Jim Cramer), one of the Potters' enforcers. Dunn impresses Holly by beating an identified Klan member to death in an alleyway as his initiation into the gang, and Dunn admits that he has been forced to murder to Watson, who insists Dunn continue the assignment.

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