Fixin' to Tell About Jack

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Directed by: Elizabeth Barret 1975 Running Time: 25:00 Color

Ray Hicks is a mountain farmer from Beech Mountain, North Carolina, with a genius for telling traditional folktales that have been passed down in his family for generations. This film shows Ray working on his farm, gathering herbs in the woods, and describing his family's tradition of storytelling and his theories of human and natural continuity. Running throughout the film is Ray telling a tale called "Whickity-Whack, Into My Sack" (also known as "Soldier Jack").

Fixin' to Tell About Jack provides a wonderful opportunity to experience the art of this National Heritage Award winner while also reminding us of the importance of passing things on, tradition, and memory.


    "A good introduction to the importance of the folktale as a vehicle for education and socialization as well as entertainment." -Lawrence W. Levine, Department of History, University of California at Berkeley

    "A beautiful editing job and an exquisite film." -Richard Chase, author of the collected and edited Jack Tales and Grandfather Tales

    "The film is excellent. The kids really enjoyed it. Good work!" -Peter Tommerup, Montclair School, Los Altos, California

    "A major part of my folklore and storytelling courses. An excellent film and a sensitive portrait of Ray." -Wilson Roberts, Department of English and Folklore, Greenfield Community College

    "Beautifully made, authentic presentation of Anglo-American folklore." -University of California Extension Media Center

    Screenings & Festivals

    • American Folklore Society
    • Conference on Visual Anthropology, Temple University
    • Montana Film and Video Festival
    • Projections on the South: Folklore and Enthography on Film

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