When Melba Wooley, the wife of Miss Em's cousin, visits, Miss Em, not wanting a long visit from the busybody, has Pinky remain in the room. Afterwards, Judge Walker expressed to Pinky his doubts that winning the case has served any interests of the community other than justice. While walking alone, Pinky is accosted by two intoxicated white men, and after she escapes their lecherous grasp, she returns home and begins to pack. She states that if the whites are going to get the house and land by cheating, she wants it out in the open for all to see, and Tom pledges his support. Pinky reveals that she is black, and Tom tenders his belief that no race is superior to another and his hope that he has no hidden racist feelings. Pinky has grown fond of the old woman, who has never been afraid to speak her mind, and is saddened when Miss Em dies.
She tells Tom that she cannot deny she is a Negro and that she does not want to be anything else, then asks him to go. . Pinkie is now a fully qualified nurse, and Dicey hopes that she will use her knowledge to help their community. Jake, a conniving lay-about, gives her fifteen dollars belonging to his wife Rozelia and promises to return the rest soon, but Rozelia sees Pinky leave with the money and threatens her. Wooley, obvlivious to Miss Em's sarcastic attempts to get rid of her, reveals that her maid, Rozelia, has been spreading gossip that Pinky is a thief.
Although Judge Walker believes that Miss Em acted unadvisedly, Pinky prevails upon his lifelong friendship with Miss Em and he agrees to represent her. When Pinky learns that neighbor Jake Waters has kept money that the illiterate Dicey gave him to mail to her, she confronts Jake at his shack. Unable to obtain nursing work and needing money for the court expenses, Pinky does washing for Dicey, who is ill now herself. Wooley does not want Miss Em to make a will, after she leaves, Miss Em sends Pinky away and writes one. Pinky then agrees to nurse Miss Em for Dicey's sake. Sound: Mono Production Co: Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp. A light-skinned black woman returns home after passing for white in nursing school.
She collapses as Pinky is returning, and when Miss Em revives, she has Doc Joe, her physician, witness the will without Pinky's knowledge. Two police officers see the confrontation and, believing Pinky to be white, begin to slap Rozelia. Wooley's lawyer tries to prove that Pinky exerted undue influence over Miss Em, but the presiding judge rules that the will is a binding legal document. Wooley decides to contest the will, and rumors spread among the whites in town that Pinky drugged Miss Em and forced her to make the will. He asks her to return North with him and live as a white, but she insists she must continue with her case and not join him after she is finished. When Miss Em castigates Pinky for pretending to be what she is not, Pinky disparages the racial rules set by white society. Pinky is haunted, however, by thoughts of her fiancé, Thomas Adams, a white Boston doctor to whom she wants to return.
Her grandmother Dicey, a hard-working, religious washerwoman, is happy that Pinky has come back from the northern school to which Dicey sent her when she was very young. Jake warns Pinky that she and the other blacks in town will face severe repercussions if she accepts the bequest, but Pinky, touched by Miss Em's faith in her, decides not to return North until the matter is settled. Later, after the distressed Pinky goes out walking, Jake visits Dicey and finds a letter addressed to Pinky that Dicey had been keeping from her. When Tom visits, he tries to convince Pinky to drop the case, but she is adamant that she does not want to let down Miss Em, herself or her people. When Rozelia reveals that Pinky also is black, the police arrest them and shove them all into their car. Dicey suspects that Pinky has passed for white up North, and when Pinky confesses that she has, her grandmother, ashamed that Pinky has denied her own racial identity, makes her pray for forgiveness. One day, Pinky is met by Tom, who has located her after receiving the telegram sent by Jake.
What many people of all races miss is the fact. After the funeral, Pinky and Dicey learn from Doc Joe that Miss Em left Pinky her home and land as an expression of regard and confidence that she would put the property to good use. Wonderful talented actors in just the right parts. Although she is humiliated by the domineering old woman, Pinky realizes that Miss Em will die soon, after which she will be able to leave. She then implies that Pinky, who is there to purchase a mourning veil, is using money stolen from Miss Em. When Tom tells Pinky that he plans to join a clinic in Denver because too many people in Boston have read about the trial, Pinky realizes that Miss Em gave her the house so that she would stay in the South and be herself.
At the courthouse, Judge Walker, who is fond of Dicey, releases Pinky with a warning to keep out of trouble. Dicey snatches it back and burns it, but Jake warns that the white doctor whose return address is on the envelope will surely come looking for Pinky and offers to send a telegram to stop him. Dicey stops her, however, and tells her that she has volunteered her as a nurse for Miss Em, a sickly white woman living in a nearby, decaying mansion. Canady, a black physician, Doc Joe and Dicey. . . .
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