The Man Who Came Back (2008 film)

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The Man Who Came Back
DVD cover
Directed byGlen Pitre
Written byGlen Pitre
Chuck Walker
Produced byMichelle Benoit
Stephen Bowen
Sam Cable
Chuck Walker
Christian Gudegast
StarringEric Braeden
Billy Zane
Sean Young
George Kennedy
Armand Assante
CinematographyStoeps Langensteiner
Edited byMatthew Booth
Simon Carmody
Music byPhil Marshall
Distributed byAnchor Bay Entertainment
Grindstone Entertainment Group
Release date
  • December 9, 2008 (2008-12-09)
Running time
112 minutes
CountryUnited States

The Man Who Came Back is a 2008 American Western film directed by Glen Pitre. It stars Eric Braeden, Billy Zane, George Kennedy, and Armand Assante. Set in southern Louisiana, it is loosely based on the 1887 sugar strike in four parishes and violence that erupted in the Thibodaux massacre.


The Man Who Came Back is loosely based on the Thibodaux massacre. This was the culmination of the largest strike in the sugar cane industry, when 10,000 workers stopped labor, and the first to be conducted by a formal labor organization, the Knights of Labor. With an estimated 50 or more African-American cane workers killed by white paramilitary forces, it was the second bloodiest labor strike in U.S. history.[1]

Following Reconstruction and white Democrats regaining control of the state government, in the late 1880s, freedmen worked hard on sugar cane plantations but were bound by many of the planters' practices. They were sometimes paid only in scrip, redeemable only at the plantation's overpriced store, and the workers struggled to get out of debt and be able to leave a plantation.

In an attempt to better their lives, the workers strike. This leads to massive retaliation by the most powerful men in the town, including the sheriff (Armand Assante), the preacher (Al Hayter), power-hungry Billy Duke (James Patrick Stuart), and his vigilante group of thugs.

White overseer Reese Paxton (Eric Braeden) steps up to demand justice for his workers. Duke's rage turns on Paxton and his family. Despite assistance from a Yankee attorney (Billy Zane), Paxton is convicted in a trial presided by Judge Duke (George Kennedy), Billy's father.

After being sent to prison, beaten within inches of his life, and enduring emotional torture, Paxton "comes back" to seek revenge.



  1. ^ Kleinschrodt, Michael (December 4, 2008). "Brutal 'Man Who Came Back' is an unsatisfying story of revenge from Louisiana filmmaker Glen Pitre". Michael Kleinschrodt. Retrieved June 19, 2016.